Two Arrested for Submitting Fake Petitions for Marijuana and Gambling Initiatives in Florida


According to authority, Three people “sent in dozens of fake petitions for marijuana and gambling initiatives,” and two of them worked only on the marijuana initiative.

Multiple statewide probes led by inspectors from the Florida Department of Law Enforcement’s Election Crime Unit (ECU) and the Florida Department of State’s Office of Election Crimes and Security (OECS), with help from county elections supervisors, led to the arrests.

Mark Glass, the commissioner of the FDLE, said, “Our elections process, whether it’s for candidates or ballot initiatives, must stay free from people who would commit voter fraud to support a candidate or initiative.”

People who were paid to hand out petitions were trying to cheat the voting system in this case. Together with the Office of Election Crimes and Security in the Department of State, our Election Crime Unit is determined to stop these attempts.

We will not stand for these illegal actions. “The Florida Constitution is a sacred document by which Florida’s government, voters, and citizens are judged,” said Cord Byrd, the secretary of state for Florida.

There is a thorough process in Florida law for putting problems to the voters to be thought about before they are added to the state’s constitution. It is not only against the law to steal this process for personal gain, but it also hurts the trust of law-abiding Floridians across the state.

Zachary Paul Dworsky, 34, of Miami, was arrested and put into the Miami-Dade County Corrections and Rehabilitation Department on December 13.

He was charged with 15 felonies for using someone else’s personal information illegally and signing a petition with someone else’s name or a fake name. Dworsky lied on papers for Ballot #22-05, which is about adults using marijuana for personal use.

Natalie Marie Marrero, 33, from Orlando, was arrested by the Winter Park Police Department on an FDLE arrest order. She was put into the Orange County Jail on November 27 and charged with 16 felonies for using fake IDs and lying on voter registration forms.

Marrero made fake papers for Ballot #22-05, which is about adults using marijuana for personal use. As soon as the investigations are over, more charges may be brought.

The cases will be brought by the Office of Statewide Prosecution under Attorney General Ashley Moody.

People who are at least 21 years old would be able to “possess, purchase, or use marijuana products and marijuana accessories for non-medical personal consumption by smoking, ingestion, or otherwise.”

The plant could be sold in approved marijuana shops, and any of the state’s licensed medical marijuana dispensaries could “acquire, cultivate, process, manufacture, sell, and distribute such products and accessories.”

Right now, the proposal is being looked at by the Florida Supreme Court, which is deciding if it can be put on the ballot in November 2024.

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