A father of four has until the end of October to pay the District ‘A’ Magistrates’ Court a $10,000 fine.
The amount was imposed on Dale Orlando Nicholls, of No. 21 Roncliffville, Grazettes, St Michael today after he pleaded guilty to three drug offences.
Station Sergeant Carrison Henry told Magistrate Douglas Frederick that police were on duty at Scotts Terrace, Grazettes, St Michael on April 20 when the 34-year-old landscaper got into a hired vehicle after placing a duffle bag and contents inside the vehicle.
Using the siren, police intercepted the vehicle and Nicholls was seen throwing the bag into a nearby hedge. Three packages containing vegetable matter suspected to be cannabis were found in the bag which police retrieved.
He was subsequently charged with possession, possession with intent to supply and trafficking of 15 pounds of cannabis which had an estimated street value of $30,000.
Today, attorney-at-law Mohia Ma’at told the court his client was remorseful.
He urged the court to impose a fine, which was within Nicholls’ means as he was the sole breadwinner in his household.
“Consider the financial climate . . . things are hard,” Ma’at said in his submission. He added that the court should also consider that school was soon out and the father of four would have to buy school supplies in the coming months.
However, Magistrate Frederick said while he was mindful of the circumstances “this is a huge amount of drugs” and as such the punishment should reflect the crime.
The attorney then put forward a
payment plan to honour the fine but the magistrate said if the amount is not settled by October 31, Nicholls will spend 18 months in prison.
The sentence was imposed on the supply charge. On the possession charge he was placed on a bond to be of good behaviour for the next year. If he breaches the order he will spend six months in prison. Nicholls was convicted, reprimanded and discharged on the trafficking charge.