Bahamas: $5,000 fine for marijuana possession

TWO MEN and a woman were in court last week on two separate drug charges. One of the men faced a $5,000 fine after admitting having 5lb of marijuana.

Stephen Murphy, 33, and Shanell McQueen-Taylor, 45, both represented by attorney Wendawn Miller-Frazer, faced Magistrate Samuel McKinney. They are charged with possession of dangerous drugs with intent to supply.

At around 8am on December 22, officers acting on information, stopped Murphy’s vehicle in New Providence in search of suspected drugs or firearms. Their investigation uncovered two vacuum sealed packets containing a total of 5lb and ¼ oz of Indian Hemp. The drugs confiscated in this case are said to have a street value of $5,100.

In a subsequent police interview, Murphy admitted to the sole ownership of the drugs.

Murphy pleaded guilty to the offence while Mrs McQueen-Taylor pleaded not guilty resulting in the charges against her being withdrawn.

Attorney Miller-Frazer said her client is a father and is gainfully employed as a landscaper. After saying that Murphy has no prior offences, she implored the court to show leniency.

Magistrate McKinney ordered Murphy to pay a fine of $5,000 or risk six months in prison. The accused was further informed that he must pay half of the fine before his release with the balance to be paid on or before January 31, 2023.

The other man, Alando Williams, 26, appeared before Magistrate Kara Turnquest-Deveaux on a charge of possession of dangerous drugs with intent to supply.

It is alleged that on December 20 in New Providence Williams was found by authorities with 1 gram of cocaine.

In court the accused pleaded not guilty. Bail was granted at $1,000 with one surety.

Williams’ trial is scheduled for January 31.

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