'Can't have you mangoes and eat it'

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Friday, March 07, 2014    

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THE sentencing of a man to 30 days imprisonment for stealing four mangoes has ignited a debate among Jamaica Observer online readers about the application of justice in Jamaica. Senior Resident Magistrate Judith Pusey handed down the sentence to 43-year-old Rohan Smith in the Corporate Area Resident Magistrate's Court on Tuesday. Here are some edited comments:


Seems like a tough penalty, obviously there's some history behind it. Accused sounds like he was 'badding up' complainant, wrong thing.


That was the correct penalty. Rules of order applies to all, particularly when you are caught, and the evidence is substantiated.

Duke Prepre

He must have really trespassed on that property, because if a tree hangs over the property line of someone else's, that person can have the tree cut back or wait until whatever fruit falls on his property, which becomes his. Likewise, the owner of the tree does not have to clean up whatever garbage falls off his tree onto the neighbour's lot. The fruits hanging over are also his.


The judge made the right decision. By her doing this, it sends a message that you can go to jail and it's not ok to take what is not yours. Others will think twice before going onto people's property to steal.

Hyulton Josephs

Did this man get a legal aid officer to speak on his behalf? Or because he is black, poor and dirty and this was an uptown community, but he has no right stealing the people's mangoes. If I were the judge after all truth and legal aspects are sorted out I would give a life sentence. If he is wrong he must bear the consequences -- can't have you MANGOES and eat it.

Neutral Justice

Lashing may be brought back on the punishment books. It's good to target petty larceny, ignoring this mango thief can lead to a criminal career that the Jamaican society can do without now. That's exactly where the grief started, bear your wants and find ways to legally improve your needs. Tough to be in prison for four Julie mangoes.


And on the other side of town, a man steals millions of dollars while responsible for a simple project [and] walks free on the streets of Jamaica. Justice in Jamaica


@jayjayja: Two wrongs don't make right. Was the other guy in front of this same judge? That man who allegedly stole a million, started from one thousand. Haha!


@jayjayja: Puss and dawg nuh have di same luck. Others getting away or allegedly getting is not a defence.


It serves him just right too as they scale people's fences in the residential areas and steal their produce all the time. It is high time that they are charged for this offence. It is not just the four mangoes, but had he asked he may have been given more but they steal and are aggressive.

This should apply to all who steal or as is termed "misappropriate funds".


Thirty days for 4 mangoes, which a bird can eat, or may drop and rot, but you fine a man for beating his woman or assaulting his niece? Really, your honour?...

Sean H Blaques

Birds won't threaten the owner. The 30 days is probably for STUPIDITY in trying to justify the theft to the judge.


Thou shalt not steal! But this is pretty draconian. 10 days would have been more than enough if she had to send him to prison. She could have made him pay five times the value of the mango or even 10 times. What is more, he pleaded guilty.

That sentence makes us really backward and savage and I do not think that tree is going to be blessed with fruits anymore. You just do not do that to a human being for something God provides at his own mercy.


I know if he had asked for a few mangoes he would have got them. Leave people things next time.

NuhLowLife gordon

Make an example of him.


Wrong is wrong; however, it is so easy to send the financially depraved to prison even at times when they are innocent. While those with their money can buy justice. Was this system initially set up for Jamaicans/black people or it was set up for the planters and their families? No wonder our justice system is a mess.





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