A 26-year-old French businessman had to part with $2,000 today, after pleading guilty to having a small quantity of cannabis and cocaine in his possession.
Florian Gonthein Quiel, who resides at Apartment E3, Graeme Hall Park, Christ Church, was spotted by police at Browne’s Beach, St Michael yesterday in conversation with 28-year-old Geren Miguel Pile, of Scarborough, Christ Church, before the non-national was handed a wrapping in exchange for money.
Police subsequently requested a search of the bag that Pile was carrying and it was found to contain vegetable matter. A substance suspected to be cocaine was also found in Pile’s groin. The combined street value of those drugs was $200, while $210 worth of the same illegal substances was found in the Frenchman’s possession.
In appealing for leniency on his client’s behalf, attorney-at-law Kashka Mottley told Magistrate Kristie Cuffy-Sargeant the accused had never found himself before the law courts since arriving in the country last November.
He said the first-time offender was remorseful and had a wife and family awaiting him back home. Mottley also highlighted the fact that France had made it to the World Cup football final.
“But when you enter another man’s land you don’t break the law,” the magistrate said in response.
Pile, meanwhile, was not represented by legal counsel. However, he told the magistrate: “I was trying to help him [Quiel] out.”
The two were fined $2,000 each, which had to be paid forthwith in order for them to avoid spending three months each in prison.
The money was paid.
However, Quiel had to hand over his passport to the District ‘A’ Magistrate’s Court as he also faces another drug charge in the Oistins Magistrate’s Court on July 13.
He has been placed on bail in the meantime.