We recently reported about a man in Rhode Island who was the head of a tax free cigarette racket that had cost the state millions of dollars in untaxed cigarettes. While the man’s legal fate hung in the balance, many expected that the prosecutor would throw the book at him. Instead he seems to simply be getting a five thousand dollar slap on the wrist.
Mohamad Mohamad has been sentenced to pay a five thousand dollar fine, spend a year in a halfway house, and then spend five years on probation. There’s an old saying, “let the punishment fit the crime.” This saying seems to have been completely and totally forgotten. The man’s lawyer tried to play the sympathy card, citing the man’s traumatic past in Syria. He also stated that he engaged in the illegal activity to support his family. Apparently they bought into it.
It seems somewhat ridiculous that some states are charging two hundred and fifty dollar fines for public smoking violations, and yet this man who has helped to swindle his state out of millions of dollars only has to pay five thousand dollars. To call this justice would be like calling two pieces of bread a cheeseburger.
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