J.T.Burnette, a Florida businessman and husband of Trulieve CEO Kim Rivers, was convicted of five of nine charges in a trial stemming from an FBI investigation into public corruption in Tallahassee, Fla.
- He was convicted of one count of extortion, two counts of fraud, one Travel Act violation and one count of making false statements. He faces up to 70 years in prison at his late October sentencing.
- Neither Trulieve nor Rivers has been accused of wrongdoing.
In the trial, prosecutors played an audio recording in which Burnette claimed to have successfully influenced the licensing process to benefit the company that would become Trulieve, now one of the country’s largest MSOs.
- Testifying under oath,Burnette said that in the recording he had been “bragging about something that happened before my time.“
In a statement, a Trulieve spokesperson wrote, “We have correctly asserted since day one that neither Trulieve nor our CEO are part of this case.”
- This spring Trulieve announced a $2.1B acquisition of competitor Harvest and says the case will not alter the deal.
- Harvest did not respond to requests for comment.
- According to an S.E.C. filing, Burnette is a minority owner of a company that provides construction and related services to Trulieve. In 2020, Trulieve’s property and equipment purchases from the vendor totaled $96.7M.