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Inmate argues religious duty to deal heroin; appeal fails
By startribune.com- Jim Suhr
Published: 04/27/2017

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — A St. Louis man ordered to spend more than a quarter century in prison on drug charges has failed to have his prosecution overturned, despite his argument that he has a religious duty to sell heroin.

In an appeal to the 8th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in St. Louis, Timothy Anderson did not deny he was a heroin dealer. Instead, he cast himself as "a student of Esoteric and Mysticism studies," saying he had created a religious nonprofit that aims to get the powerful narcotic to "the sick, lost, blind, lame, deaf and dead members of God's Kingdom."

Anderson insisted his prosecution on a 2013 indictment violated federal protections of religious rights because his heroin peddling was an exercise of his "sincerely held religious belief."

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