Court to make special measures application in US$420,000 cocaine case

ST JAMES, Jamaica— The St James Parish Court intends to file a special measures application in the case involving a St Ann farmer who was caught with US$420,000 (J$60,480,000) worth of cocaine and a small quantity of weed in his luggage at the Sangster International Airport in Montego Bay, St James in October last year.

READ: British man charged after US$420,000 cocaine bust at Sangster airport

The special measures application is a request made by the prosecution to allow a witness residing overseas to give evidence through a "live link".

Alan Reid, 66, was scheduled to stand trial before Judge Kaysha Grant-Pryce on Monday, but the case was unable to proceed due to his legal representative Martyn Thomas’ involvement in another matter in Westmoreland. Additionally, the special measures application had not yet been submitted.

“It is our intention to make a special measures application,” the clerk of the court told the court during Monday’s hearing.

“I do not wish to start the matter in July because the court goes on break in August," Grant-Pryce explained, "However, if you are going to make an application for special measures, I will set a July date to accommodate that application, but it is unlikely that the matter will be heard on that day.”

The judge scheduled a date on July 26 for the special measures application and advised the court that in case it is granted, adequate preparation time will be needed for the overseas witness to provide evidence through live link.

Grant-Pryce then informed the witnesses who were present in the courtroom that the trial would not commence on that day, but that they should provide their contact information to the clerk to be notified of an upcoming October date on which the trial is expected to commence.

Reid’s bail was extended.

The facts are that Reid was about to board a flight to Manchester, England, around 3:20 pm on October 1, last year, when his luggage was found to contain six packages with 8.5 kilogrammes of cocaine and two packages with 2.03 ounces of ganja.

He was arrested and charged with breaches of the Dangerous Drugs Act.

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