A judge this week dismissed charges against an Okmulgee County retailer accused of selling synthetic marijuana after an attorney for Wirth Law Office pointed out that particular substances sold as potpourri or incense were not illegal at the time police raided the retail location. Legislators had earmarked a chemical in the blend to be added to a list of outlawed substances but the substance was not on the list in May when police executed a search warrant at the Okmulgee County convenience store.
Police obtained the warrant and seized the retailer’s inventory, along with cash they had paid for the substance, even though there was no law in force at that time prohibiting sale of that product, marketed as incense. A police report indicated the retailer told police at the time of the raid the substance was not illegal, but that he knew the laws were set to change and that he planned to soon stop selling the substance.
Police seized 244 packages labeled as incense or potpourri, and 65 pipes from the convenience store, and charged the man with conspiracy to distribute a synthetic controlled substance and maintaining a place to sell controlled substances. The charges could have resulted in fines and jail time. A judge dismissed the case after a Wirth Law Office attorney showed the court the law in place at the time of the raid.
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