High Times Writer Nabbed in Pot Bust

Former hip-hop mogul also busted in takedown

So much for the high life.

Cops busted a writer for marijuana magazine High Times along with 45 other people, including a man behind a major hip-hop label, for allegedly operating a multi-million dollar pot ring.

Police arrested magazine writer Matthew Woodstock Stang and Kareem Burke, who founded Roc-a-Fella records along with Jay-Z and Damon Dash, in the federal takedown.

Prosecutors say the marijuana was grown hydroponically in Florida and smuggled to New York for sale. Stang was allegedly the guy who supplied the marijuana to the man who ran the pot ring, identified as Geovanny "Manny" Rodriguez Perez.

"In the case of the High Times employee, it's a case of art imitating real life," Jim Hayes, a special agent who heads Homeland Security Investigations for Immigration and Customs Enforcement, told the New York Post.

Federal agents say they seized $2 million and more than 360 pounds of marijuana in the bust. Hayes said authorities would centralize their efforts on ensuring competing pot networks don't use the same methods to ship marijuana across state lines.

Stang was released on $500,000 bail and ordered to wear a monitoring bracelet. High Times didn't return the Post's requests for comment. Burke was remanded after his arraignment.

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