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Trulieve hits a bump in its path to leading Florida’s medical marijuana industry

This should be the best of times for Trulieve.

The medical marijuana company sold more than half of all the smokable cannabis distributed to patients in Florida last month. It’s recorded 14 straight profitable quarters. The company pulled down more than $215 million in revenue in the last quarter alone. It’s on the verge of acquiring another medical marijuana firm, Harvest Health & Recreation — a transaction that would transform Trulieve into the largest and most profitable national cannabis player in the country, the firm has projected.

But this summer, Trulieve also had its first major public relations crisis. In August, J.T. Burnette, the husband of CEO Kim Rivers, was convicted of five of nine federal corruption-related charges in a highly publicized trial.

Burnette had to answer questions on the stand about a tape-recorded conversation he had with undercover FBI agents in which he bragged about helping lawmakers craft the 2014 law that paved the way for Trulieve to enter the Florida market. One of those lawmakers, former state Rep. Halsey Beshears, is the brother of a Trulieve board member. Rivers herself was subpoenaed in the case for information, although that inquiry was about a different business venture, not Trulieve.

The company’s stock fell about 29% from the start of the trial through Wednesday. [Read More @ The Miami Herald]

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