Crime & Court

Kadavu Duo Cop 7 Years For Cultivating Marijuana

They led the Police officers to their farm from where 1202 plants were uprooted and seized as exhibits. Their size ranged from 15 to 163 centimetres in height and the total weight of the plants were 25 kilograms.
05 May 2020 12:17
Kadavu Duo Cop 7 Years For Cultivating Marijuana
Viliame Mocevakaca, 20, (in bula shirt) and Josaia Delai, 19, outside the High Court in Suva on May 4, 2020. Photo: Ashna Kumar

While handing down a sentence to two Kadavu youths, who pleaded guilty to one count of unlawful cultivation of illicit drugs, High Court Judge Justice Daniel Goundar made a statement.

“Cultivation of marijuana, especially in secluded locations, is becoming too prevalent in our community. Drug cartels are turning to ordinary unemployed villagers and exploiting their social-economic vulnerability. Those involved in this lucrative business have no regard to the harm the illicit drug causes to society. If this evil is not controlled, it will spread, causing many social problems and destroy many lives. The court’s duty is to denounce such conduct and deter others from drug cultivation,” he said.

Viliame Mocevakaca, 20, and Josaia Delai, 19, were sentenced to seven years imprisonment with a non-parole period of four years.

In March 2019, a team of Police officers raided a farm in Kadavu. The Police officers found the two youths at close vicinity of their farm and when they confronted them, they admitted to cultivating marijuana.

They led the Police officers to their farm from where 1202 plants were uprooted and seized as exhibits. Their size ranged from 15 to 163 centimetres in height and the total weight of the plants were 25 kilograms.

Justice Goundar said the objective seriousness of the offence was reflected in the penalty prescribed for the cultivation of an illicit drug.

He said the two youths were unemployed, but unemployment was not an excuse for drug cultivation

He has also ordered for the drugs to be destroyed forthwith.

Edited by Jonathan Bryce

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