Man fined $10,000 for ganja, cocaine in St James court

ST JAMES, Jamaica— A man who was caught with a small quantity of marijuana and cocaine was fined $10,000 when he appeared in the St James Parish Court on Wednesday.

Owen Waite, 24, pleaded guilty to possession of ganja and cocaine when he appeared before presiding parish judge Sasha-Marie Smith-Ashley.

According to information presented to the court, on January 2 officers were on mobile patrol in the vicinity of White House when they noticed two men crossing the road. When they were told to stop, one of the men took something from his knapsack and tossed it away.

The object was recovered and discovered to be three small parcels containing one gram of cocaine. A small quantity of ganja was also found.

When Waite was cautioned, he reportedly said to the officer, “A jus a likkle juggling mi a do boss. Beg yuh a chance please.”

In mitigation, attorney-at-law Henry McCurdy stated that his client was hard-working, had no prior convictions and requested leniency from the judge.

McCurdy also informed the court that his client intends to go back to school to learn a trade and improve himself. The lawyer also cited some success stories of former offenders.

Smith-Ashley stated that she would take Waite's age and previous good character into consideration, and assured him that she would give him a chance.

“You are the author of your destiny… Everything is in your hands now… Be a success story like the stories that your attorney shared with us,” the judge said.

She then fined him $8,000 or 10 days in jail for having the cocaine and $2,000 or 10 days in jail for having the weed.

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