THE PART-OWNER AND OPERATOR OF CANNABLISS medical marijuana dispensaries in Portland and Eugene, Oregon, was sentenced to seven months in federal prison for tax crimes in September, reports The Oregonian. Federal prosecutors called it the first federal sentencing of a legal marijuana business owner on tax charges.
Matthew Price, 32, pleaded guilty to four counts of willfully failing to file income tax returns, a misdemeanor. He was ordered by pay $262,776 in restitution to the IRS. Price was ordered to turn himself in by November 1.
Price, even as he avoided paying his taxes, was advising the Oregon Liquor Control Commission on rules for the state’s recreational Cannabis businesses, according to U.S. Attorney Seth Uram. Price failed to report nearly $1 million of income and disregarded advice from CPAs who had warned him, for years, not to use his business money to pay personal expenses, the prosecutor said.
But Price didn’t listen; paying $67,000 cash for a sports car, $15,000 cash on a Rolex watch, went on tropical vacations, bought expensive homes and season tickets to the Portland Trailblazers, Uram said.