crimesider

Cigarette Kingpin Rodney Morrison Could be Freed from NY Prison

(AP)

Rodney Morrison's Peace Pipe Smoke Shop (AP)
NEW YORK (CBS/AP) One of New York State's biggest dealers in untaxed cigarettes could soon be returning home from prison.

Rodney Morrison has been imprisoned six years while prosecutors argued he was a killer and that his business on Long Island's Poospatuck Indian Reservation was a criminal racket.

But a jury cleared him of a murder charge two years ago, and two weeks ago a federal judge tossed out his conviction for cigarette trafficking.

The judge cited a "lack of clarity" in state laws regarding cigarettes sold on Indian reservations.

Morrison could still get up to 10 years on a gun charge, but his lawyers say guidelines call for him to get less time than he has already served.

The sentencing is scheduled for Friday.

  • Edecio Martinez

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