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Feds: Fugitive ex-leader of "Cornbread Mafia" pot ring nabbed in Canada

MONTREAL -- The reputed former leader of the notorious Kentucky-based “Cornbread Mafia” marijuana ring has been captured in Canada after eight years on the run, according to the U.S. Marshals.

John “Johnny” Boone was taken into custody by Canadian law enforcement officials Thursday after the marshals developed information that led them to a small town outside Montreal, CBS affiliate WLKY reports

Federal authorities have been looking for Boone since 2008, when they say they found more than 2,000 marijuana plants on his farm near Springfield, Kentucky.  A federal warrant for his arrest was issued that year on a charge of possession with intent to manufacture and distribute marijuana. But if any of Boone’s many fans and followers – who refer to him as the “Godfather of Grass” and the “King of Pot” – knew his whereabouts, they didn’t share it with federal authorities.

The charges mark the third federal case for Boone, who was convicted after a bust in the late 1980s for taking part in what federal prosecutors called the “largest domestic marijuana syndicate in American history.” The syndicate allegedly commandeered by Boone consisted of 29 farms in Minnesota, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Michigan, Nebraska, Missouri, Kansas, and Wisconsin, and came to be known as the “Cornbread Mafia.”

Seventy Kentuckians were accused of growing 182 tons of marijuana, and Boone spent more than a decade in prison.

Boone was previously featured on “America’s Most Wanted.” He’s being detained in Canada on immigration charges and awaiting extradition to the U.S. If convicted on the drug charges, he faces a possible sentence of life in prison.

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