So how do you get one of those? In Fall River, a struggling former mill town and one of the poorest cities in the state, the answer was “bribe the mayor.”
On Tuesday, former mayor Jasiel F. Correia II—convicted in May of soliciting and accepting more than $475,000 in cash bribes from four would-be cannabis entrepreneurs—was sentenced to six years in federal prison.
Correia, who sold himself to voters as a savvy and suave wunderkid when he was elected mayor at the age of 23 in 2015, is one of the highest profile American politicians to be snared in a cannabis-centered corruption scheme.
And until cannabis legalization is reformed to not grant extraordinary power to politicians like Correia, he will not be the last.
In the meantime, this is great news for federal law enforcement, for whom marijuana legalization—and the temptations it presents for almighty deciders like Correia—presents a prime opportunity to bust corrupt politicians.