A co-defendant of marijuana activist Ed Rosenthal was sentenced in federal court in San Francisco today to six months of home confinement for a marijuana charge and a tax charge. Kenneth Hayes, 41, a former Petaluma resident who now lives in San Bruno, was also sentenced by U.S. District Judge Charles Breyer to three years’ probation and to the 41 days already served by Hayes in jail after he returned to the United States in December.Additionally, Breyer ordered Hayes to pay $20,755 to the U.S. Internal Revenue Service for back taxes, penalties and interest owed for the year 2000. Hayes and Rosenthal, 64, were both charged with marijuana cultivation after federal authorities raided the now-defunct Harm Reduction Center in San Francisco, a marijuana dispensary operated by Hayes.Rosenthal was convicted of three marijuana charges after two federal trials and was sentenced by Breyer in 2007 to one day already served in prison. Rosenthal said he was growing starter plants for patients under
California’s medical marijuana law, but was not allowed to argue that defense in federal court.Hayes had moved to Canada six weeks before the raid. He lived there for three years and then in European countries including Romania before returning to face the charges last December.In April, Hayes pleaded guilty to one count of maintaining a building where marijuana was distributed and one count of filing a false income tax for 2000 by failing to report $84,789 in income from the Harm Reduction Center.While in Romania, Hayes completed one year of medical school but was also convicted of growing a plant with psychedelic qualities and spent five or six months in prison there before agreeing to return to the United States, according to his defense attorney, William Panzer.Breyer said of Hayes during the sentencing, “I think he’s made a series of poor choices but I think he’s paid for it.”Hayes said outside of court that he hopes to complete medical school, possibly in Romania, after he has served his sentence.”I’m happy to finally have this behind me and I’m ready to move on with my life,” Hayes said.
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