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Man sentenced to four years for dealing marijuana

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COLUMBUS, Ind. — A Chicago man convicted of dealing marijuana was sentenced Tuesday to four years in prison.

Francisco Martinez, 29, was found guilty by a jury on March 7 on dealing marijuana, a Class C felony, and possession of marijuana, a Class D felony.

The charges stem from a traffic stop on Interstate 65 in September. Martinez was a passenger in the vehicle, in which police said they found more than 20 pounds of marijuana.

Martinez did not testify at his trial. At his sentencing hearing Tuesday, he made a statement and said he realizes how being locked up has affected his family and that he wants to be a better person when he is released from prison.

Bartholomew Superior Court 1 Chris Monroe said the amount of marijuana inside the vehicle was “significant,” and aggravated Martinez’s sentence.

But Martinez has a minimal criminal record, the judge said, which balanced out the aggravating factor.

Monroe dismissed the possession conviction because of double jeopardy issues.

Immigration authorities have a hold placed on Martinez for possible deportation after he is released from prison.

The judge told Martinez he can appeal his conviction and sentence. Martinez said he wants to consider the options before deciding.


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