A Mexican immigrant who entered the United States as a minor is facing the prospect of deportation because she was convicted for selling pot brownies at her high school to raise money for a prom dress she just had to have.
The immigrant, Saira Munoz, was busted a little over a year ago. She carried out her illicit bake sale on the campus of River Valley High School in Yuba City, Calif. (about 40 miles north of Sacramento).
Munoz, now 19, pleaded no contest to a felony charge of child endangerment and a misdemeanor charge of marijuana possession on school grounds in February of this year, reports the Appeal-Democrat.
Earlier this week, a judge sentenced Munoz to four years of probation and nine days in jail (with credit for time served).
When probation officers contacted Immigration Customs Enforcement prior to sentencing, they learned that Munoz has “temporary permission” to be in the United States. The pot-brownie conviction could cause that permission to be rescinded.
Munoz emigrated to the U.S. from Mexico in 2000—presumably with her family, as she was just 5 years old at the time.
At her sentencing hearing, the presiding judge told Munoz: “If you are departed, you must not return unless you do so legally. If you do return, you must check in with probation immediately.”
“I’m hoping you’ve learned your lesson,” he added, according to the Appeal-Democrat.
According to a probation report, Munoz admitted to selling the brownies when police arrested her. The entrepreneur said she had acquired the cannabis-laced treats from a friend, of course. She also said she hoped to sell enough of them to buy the perfect prom dress.
One of the students who consumed a brownie – allegedly just a small piece – ended up going to the hospital in an ambulance after saying her legs felt all tingly. The student worried that the brownies contained other, more nefarious illegal ingredients.
Munoz was 18 at the time of her arrest. Two minors received citations for assisting in the scheme. She had apparently hired those students to be part of her sales staff.
“It is unknown if the defendant will be deported,” a probation officer wrote in a report obtained by the Appeal-Democrat.
One of Munoz’s high school friends, Carlos Robles, told CBS News he thinks the possibility of deportation is way too harsh.
“People make mistakes,” Robles told CBS Sacramento. “She was just a very positive person.”
“There’s people that deserve to be deported, and she just wasn’t one of them,” Robles added. “There’s people that do way worse.”
Munoz currently works at a Yuba City area restaurant.