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Antiguan gets 9 months in Jamaican prison for ganja

By TANESHA MUNDLE

Thursday, September 13, 2012 | 10:41 AM    

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KINGSTON, Jamaica — An Antiguan man who was hoping to bypass serving prison time in the island after attempting to smuggle out almost four pounds of ganja, was yesterday slapped with a nine-month prison sentence when he appeared in the Corporate Area Resident Magistrate’s Court.

The attorney representing the foreigner, Granville Thomas, begged Magistrate Georgianna Fraser not to impose a custodial sentence and to only fine the Antiguan and send him home.

But the magistrate refused, insisting that she has to dispense the same penalty that a Jamaican would have received in Antigua.

“I will just be as courteous to him as they would have been to us,” the magistrate said. “I will just give him room and board before sending him on his way.”

Thomas, who pleaded guilty to possession of ganja, dealing in ganja, and taking steps to export ganja, was also fined $36,600, and if the fine is not paid, he will spend a further six months in prison.

He was ordered to pay $6,100 or serve three months in prison on the possession charge, and $30,500 or six months on the attempting to export charge. The other charge was admonished and discharged.

Thomas was held at the Norman Manley International Airport on September 9 with 3.8 pounds of ganja in his suitcase.

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