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Single mother of 6 faces jail time for selling homemade ceviche on Facebook

Single mother of 6 faces jail time for selling homemade ceviche on Facebook

In the latest example of excessive policing, a single mother in Stockton, California is facing up to a year in jail for selling homemade food.
Mariza Reulas, a single mother of six children, is a member of the Facebook group 209 Food Spot, in which members cook homemade meals, share their favorite recipes, and sometimes sell them to other people looking for a quick bite to eat. However, according to California state law, the commerce part of the 209 Food Spot is illegal.
Most outrageously, Reulas was busted in an undercover sting operation in which a San Joaquin County investigator purchased a bowl of Reulas’ homemade Ceviche, then proceeding to cite her for selling food without a permit. Reulas was offered a plea deal of three years’ probation, which she refused. If she’s convicted upon conclusion of the trial, Reulas would serve prison time for the crime of selling homemade food. In addition to Reulas, roughly a dozen others in the group were charged with operating a food facility and engaging in business without a permit.
Reulas told local media that her legal troubles are causing undue stress for her children, particularly on nights before she’s scheduled to appear in court.
“The night before he always asks like are you going to come back?” Reulas told KTLA.
County officials defended the heavy-handed approach to the 209 Food Spot case, saying they’re simply enforcing laws that are already on the books.
“Food prepared in a facility that does not inspect it creates a risk to the public,” said San Joaquin County deputy district attorney Kelly McDaniel.
As the only parent in her household, Reulas’ potential conviction means her kids may be taken by child services and put in foster homes.



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