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A man who was sentenced to life in prison for selling $30 of marijuana will be freed

Derek Harris was sentenced to life in prison for selling $30 worth of marijuana. Photo source The Promise of Justice Initiative

Derek Harris. Photo source The Promise of Justice Initiative

Black man serving a life sentence for selling less than $30 worth of cannabis will soon be released from prison, his attorney told CNN

In 2008, a military veteran named Derek Harris was arrested for selling officer 69 grams of marijuana, worth less than $30. He was convicted and sentenced to 15 years in prison.

Four years later, in 2012 he again convicted and was sent serving a life sentence in prison under the Habitual Offender Law. A law that allows judges to impose stricter sentences on someone who’s been charged before.

According to Harris lawyer Cormac Boyle, prosecutors agreed to release him from prison after Louisiana Supreme Court granted him a new hearing in July.
The District Attorney agreed that Harris “received ineffective assistance at sentencing and was entitled to a lesser sentence,” Boyle said in a statement.

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