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New York college student arrested in Russia for medical marijuana

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A New York college student was arrested in Russia for allegedly possessing medical marijuana.

Audrey Lorber, a student at Pace University in New York, was stopped at Pulkovo Airport in St. Petersburg with 19.05 grams of cannabis, according to a news release from the city’s court system published by the Moscow Times last week.

She pleaded guilty to drug possession, a charge that carries a sentence of up to three years, according to the Times.

“The defendant’s patent issued in the U.S. on marijuana use as part of a medical program doesn’t extend to Russian territory,” the news release said. The statement was posted on the encrypted messaging platform Telegram Sept. 2, but it’s unclear when Lorber was taken into custody.

Lorber is accused of violating Article 228 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation. In 2018, 100,000 people were arrested in Russia for breaking that same law, according to the Times.

Pace University confirmed toUSA TODAY that Lorber is a student there. 

Rep. Max Rose, D-N.Y., who represents Staten Island where Lorber lives, according to NBC News, issued a statement about the arrest over the weekend.

“I’m working to help get Audrey home as soon as possible because no American citizen should be held in jail for a medical condition,” Rose said on social media.

Follow N’dea Yancey-Bragg on Twitter: @NdeaYanceyBragg

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