A pot farmer in New Jersey received a 50 year sentence, with no eligibility for parole for almost 17 years. William Allegro, 32, was found guilty of cultivation and possession of eight pounds of pot, with intent to distribute. A fire blamed on an overloaded circuit drew firefighters to his home, who discovered containers of marijuana “while looking around the apartment for an ax they had misplaced.”
Because of a non-violent criminal juvenile record, and a 1993 conviction for about 10 ounces of pot, Allegro fell under new guidelines established by the state attorney general. Before the new rules, Allegro would have received 18 years, with parole after seven.
Judge Paul Chaiet said the sentence was “simply too severe,” and state prosecutor John Kaye commented that prison terms for murder, rape and assault are often shorter. Yet both were willing to invoke the lengthy sentence.?
Allegro is appealing the decision.