From the Courts
August 5, 2011
Chateau man charged $35,000 for cannabis possession

A 20-year-old Chateaubelair man who was given a $200 job to transport marijuana from the mountains to Fanny Bay beach in Richmond,{{more}} was fined $35,000 for being in possession of the drug.

On August 2, Arnanad Charles pleaded guilty to possession of 28,148 grams (62 pounds) of the drug when he appeared at the Serious Offences Court before Chief Magistrate, Sonya Young.

Young ordered the young man to pay $2,000 forthwith and the remainder within six months or 18 months in prison.

The facts heard in court stated that at about 1:20 p.m. on July 30, Rapid Response Unit (RRU) and Coastguard personnel were on patrol along the Leeward coast. On reaching Fannybay, Charles was seen sitting on a sack on the beach. When the boat got close, Charles ran, but was subsequently caught.

He was brought back to where the bag was located and it was discovered that the bag contained four brown taped packages of marijuana. When cautioned, Charles replied: “Ah some weed. Ah Lucian boat ah come fo them.

Representing Charles, attorney Grant Connell stated that the young man lives with his grandmother, and according to his instructions, Charles was given a job to carry the marijuana from the mountain to the beach.

Connell said his client expressed great remorse for his actions and did not waste the court’s time. Stating that the street value of the drug is close to $30,000, Connell said his client is not involved in the drug trade, but was used as a mule. “He is the father of a six month old baby. I ask the court to impose a fine and give him some time to pay…,” Connell pleaded.

Magistrate Young said she believed Charles was used as a mule, since he was seen sitting on the sack containing the drugs.