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Montana's First Caregiver for Medical Marijuana Dies in Prison

Submitted by Phillip Smith on (Issue #749)
Politics & Advocacy

The first person to register as a caregiver under Montana's now gutted medical marijuana program has died in federal prison. Richard Flor, 68, died at a Bureau of Prisons facility outside Las Vegas last Wednesday just a few months into a five-year federal prison sentence.

Flor, his wife, Sherry, and his son, Justin, operated a caregiver business from their home and at a Billings dispensary. Flor was also the co-owner of Montana Cannabis, one of the state's largest medical marijuana providers until it was raided by the DEA as part of the massive raids in March 2011.

Although there were no allegations of Flor or his family violating state laws, they could not escape the wrath of the federal government. All three were found guilty of drug-related charges and were sentenced to prison terms. Sherry Flor got two years for keeping the books and tending plants, while Justin Flor got five years for running the Billings dispensary.

US District Court Judge Charles Lovell sentenced Flor to years in federal prison despite testimony that he was suffering from a variety of illnesses, including dementia, diabetes, hepatitis C, and osteoporosis. Lovell did recommend that Flor "be designated for incarceration at a federal medical center" where his "numerous physical and mental diseases and conditions can be evaluated and treated."

That didn't happen, according to the Billings Gazette two days after Flor died. Although he had been taken into the custody of US Marshals in May, he spent all but the final days of his life at a private correctional facility in Shelby, Montana, while the federal Bureau of Prisons decided where to place him.The Las Vegas federal facility where he died was a transfer center, not his final destination at a BOP medical facilty, which he never knew or reached.

Flor died after a pair of massive heart attacks, according to his daughter.

Three other founding members of Montana Cannabis also face long prison sentences, including activist and political consultant Tom Daubert, who helped run the initiative campaign that brought medical marijuana to the state via the popular vote. At least a dozen other Montana medical marijuana providers have also been convicted on federal drug charges.

As the DEA was busily decimating the state's burgeoning medical marijuana industry in 2011, Republican lawmakers were also moving to destroy it, and largely succeeded, passing legislation that all but gutted it. But medical marijuana proponents are fighting back. They have qualified the Montana Medical Marijuana Initiative, I-124, for the November ballot. It would repeal the bill passed by the legislature last year.

Permission to Reprint: This content is licensed under a modified Creative Commons Attribution license. Content of a purely educational nature in Drug War Chronicle appear courtesy of DRCNet Foundation, unless otherwise noted.


Anomious (not verified)

For all the ones that claim pot, weed,  marijuana,  Cannabis Kills, Here is your first Victim.Sentence to death by your own hands.How many more are you willing to kill or imprison ?? 

Thu, 08/30/2012 - 8:33pm Permalink
tempname_64715 (not verified)

In reply to by Anomious (not verified)

As many as it takes to keep the money flowing in, of course.  Gotta keep those private prisons full or someone may not get a new island for Christmas this year....

Fri, 08/31/2012 - 12:15pm Permalink
Paul Pot (not verified)


This is unquestionably political persecution resulting in death and as such it qualifies as a crime against humanity. So many people are suffering without their medicine and many don't even know it because of all the lies. On top of that anyone who does know and does something about it ends up abused to death. The state has committed serious crimes and those who made the decisions and carried out the orders have to be called to account for their actions. 
Unfortunately they have the upper hand with the law on their side which is why it is so important to register to vote for any ballot initiative or politician in support of drug law reform this year. 
Innocent people are in prison while we put up with incompetent politicians running the country and massively funded criminals and terrorists waging war in the streets across the world. The social and economic cost of the drug war is hard to calculate it's so huge, almost every modern war in the world can be traced back to the drug war. Every police force in the world has been corrupted. It is such absurdly incompetent policy that it warrants criminal prosecution and lengthy sentences. These people know what they are doing and must not get away with it.  When the war is over, there must be trials. 
Legalize! Apologize! Compensate! Prosecute!
Fri, 08/31/2012 - 3:21am Permalink
HempFestArrest (not verified)

There should be billboards all over the state calling out the murderous federal judge Charles Lovell. Same thing for the prosecutor. Stop giving these fascist thugs in black robes a pass. Flyers should be handed out at every event in the state with the names and pictures of these war criminal thugs. How about some background research on these criminals. Most of these judges and prosecutors are a bunch of perverts. Who else would parade around in public dressed up in stupid black robes pretending they're just doing their jobs of being good little Nazis persecuting harmless enemies of the state. 

Fri, 08/31/2012 - 5:05pm Permalink
Ursamagick (not verified)

In reply to by HempFestArrest (not verified)

Many details of this story may be found in the 'comments' section of a similar article on Toke of the Town, It's possible that it may be against federal law to put the pictures of these war criminals on posters or leaflets. You might want to check that out. This is an election year, there are plenty of events one might attend. This particular criminal plies his trade in the state capital. Missoula Hempfest is in one week. I have a feeling there will be many important announcements made. If nothing else, the karma of these individuals is so bad that any earthly punishments will pale in comparison to what the universe has in store for them. Every controversy has a tipping point. The patriots had the Boston Massacre, the gays had Stonewall, we have Richard Flor. No justice, no peace. Richard was told by those who hold themselves above the will of the people that he would give them five years of his life. He said "Fuck you!"

Sat, 09/01/2012 - 12:36am Permalink
saynotohypocrisy (not verified)

His blood is on the hands of all the alcohol supremacist bigots who think they have the right to order their fellow citizens not to use cannabis. You folks are fascist pigs and if you won't repent, the best thing you can do is to drop dead and leave us peaceful freedom loving Americans alone.

Mon, 09/03/2012 - 10:27am Permalink
Jeff Brown (not verified)

They have told more lies about cannabis then any other thing I can think of. They said it caused murder, rape, crime, made you grow breast, caused chromosome damage, made you impotent etc. . The people have seen thru the lies. The prohibitionist are the criminals. We the people will eventually win. Cannabis for medicine, food, clothing, shelter, energy, insight, re-creation. Free the most useful plant on the planet.

Thu, 09/06/2012 - 5:30pm Permalink
[email protected] (not verified)

I am not voting for him (either Green or Libertarian) for just this reason, but i have luxury of living in California in a blue district, so i have the luxury of avoiding the lesser of two evils.  That really is the choice.

Sat, 09/08/2012 - 7:45pm Permalink
Xan Tok (not verified)

And the U.S dropped millions of tonnes of bombs and napalm on my country (Cambodia) in the name of preserving freedom in Vietnam and Indochina...and do this to their own people....I weep...
Sat, 12/22/2012 - 5:44pm Permalink

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