FERN ACRES, Hawaii – Police have charged the operator of the Alternative Pain Management Pu’uhonua Collective with 31 counts after a narcotics search warrant was served on his Fern Acres property.
58-year-old Michael Doyle Ruggles of Mountain View, was arrested at the scene on Thursday, September 10th and taken to the Hilo police cellblock where he remains pending his initial court hearing scheduled for Monday. His bail was set at $84,500.
Police say they recovered 134 marijuana plants, 49.3 pounds of dried processed marijuana, 1.2 pounds and 357 capsules of suspected marijuana concentrate, 5.5 pounds of marijuana edibles, $1,846 in cash for forfeiture, a loaded pistol, a loaded shotgun and a 15-round magazine for a pistol. On Friday, Ruggles was charged with five counts of promoting marijuana, seven counts of promoting a harmful drug, four counts of promoting a detrimental drug, 14 counts of possessing drug paraphernalia and one count of ownership magazine prohibited.
VIDEO: INSIDE THE PU’UHOUNA
Video by Big Island Video News from July 2015
Mike Ruggles introduced Big Island Video News to his Alternative Pain Management Pu’uhonua Collective in July. It was said to be the first of its kind on Hawaii Island. At that point, the collective had been open for six months, at a time when medical marijuana dispensaries were about to become legal in the state of Hawaii. Governor David Ige signed the legislation a few days after this was filmed. But Ruggles said his Pu’uhonua Collective is not a dispensary, and he said his collective is already operating within the confines of current law. He said he was already accounting for tax in his transactions, with plans to pay the state its share of the revenue.
“If they’re smart, they’ll be happy,” Ruggles said of authorities at the time. “If they’re not, we can fight about it.”