Grand Bay farmer fined $23k for cultivation and trafficking of cannabis

A Grand Bay man has until December 31, 2023, to complete payment of a $23,000.00 fine which was handed down against him by the Court, following his guilty plea to cultivation of 152 plants of cannabis and drug trafficking 5,448 grams of the said drug valued at $38,000.00.

Connel Angol age 47 of Montine, Grand Bay, appeared before Chief Magistrate, Candia Carrette-George on the two charges preferred against him by the police. According to the facts of the case presented to the court by Police Prosecutor, Sergeant David Andrew Jr., on August 19, 2023 about 5:00 a.m., Acting  Corporal Sachin Titre, and other police officers from the Criminal Investigations Department (CID), the Special Service Unit (SSU) and Grand Bay Police Station, went on duty at the residence of Angol armed with a search warrant.

On arrival, Angol was met and informed by Corporal Titre of the said warrant to search his premises for unlicensed firearms and ammunition which were alleged to have been concealed there. The officers subsequently commenced
their search. One black plastic bag containing a quantity of what appeared to be alleged cannabis was found on the floor in the living room of the defendant’s house.

Angol was cautioned and asked about the discovery but he made no reply. During their continued search outside of the home, a number of fully grown cannabis plants in excess of three (3) were seen planted in the ground and in gardening pots under a lumber structure covered with tarpaulin and plastic lit with solar lights.

Under caution, Angol told the officers, “I was in Guadeloupe, my brother that plant it. I just come out from Guadeloupe. I meet it and I leave it because is [not] my place.”

In another area on the property, one blue and white sheet containing a quantity of cannabis was also found. Upon conclusion of the search the alleged cannabis plants were uprooted and counted in the presence of Angol and amounted to 152 plants, 47 small gardening pots, the black plastic bag containing the alleged cannabis, the blue and white sheet containing the alleged cannabis, one Spear and Jackson pump action pressure sprayer, seven large gardening pots, two seedling trays, two solar lights and two small solar panels.

The items seized along with Angol were transported to the Police Headquarters. There the uprooted cannabis plants were weighed and amounted to 70,370 grams, the black plastic bag, 1, 816 grams, and the blue and white sheet containing cannabis amounted to 3,632 grams grams.

Samples from the alleged cannabis were taken to the Government Analyst for testing and later returned positive.
At the completion of the investigation, charges of cultivation of cannabis and drug trafficking were preferred against Angol. The accused man appeared before the court unrepresented. However, Attorney-at-Law Ronald Charles appeared as an amicus curiae (friend to the court) offered his services to Angol, and presented a plea in mitigation on his behalf.

Charles pleaded with the court to not impose a custodial sentence against the Montine man due to his health conditions. The attorney posited that Angol was honest and cooperative with the police during their investigation, is of good character, and remorseful of the situation he found himself in.

“He is a 47-year-old father of four adult children who he still assists. Although he had previous convictions, given the time which has [passed] since his last conviction, the court must consider him a first-time offender,” Charles stated.

“So, Your Honor I am asking for a second chance for this very remorseful hardworking farmer who came before you and did not waste the court’s time. We ask that a fine be imposed with reasonable time to pay.”

The maximum penalty for cultivation of cannabis and drug trafficking is $150,000.00 or three times the street value or a term of imprisonment of up to 15 years.

The Chief Magistrate, Candia Carrette-George who presided over said that, given the defendant’s health condition she would not impose a custodial sentence. On both charges, she established a starting point of 35% of the maximum sentence and granted a one-third discount for Angol’s guilty plea, further discount for his good character, remorse, and cooperation with the police.

On the charge of cultivation of cannabis, he was fined $10,000.00 and $13,000.00 for drug trafficking. The first payment of $5,000.00 was to be paid by August 25, 2023, whilst an additional $5,000.00 is due by October 31, 2023, and the remaining balance of $13,000.00 is due no later than December 31, 2023. In default of any payment, Angol will be imprisoned for six months.

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  1. Our parrots are laying eggs
    September 1, 2023

    so if we are allowed to smoke weed, and possess a few ounces, how do we get the weed in the first place? do the govt grow weed in the forestry department and sell it to everyone else? bc I don’t get it. weed grows into a tree. and people who smoke it grow it for themselves. there is something fundamentally wrong with this whole partial legality thing

  2. De Unjust Judge
    August 29, 2023

    I thought Skerrit had legalized ganja. So you mean to tell me they only legalized smoking marijuana so our young people could smoke and become paro but ensured that nobody can legally grow it to earn a living from it? Man if the man is a farmer they should give him a license to grow it to raise his damn children. The other thing is , I wonder if Connel is voting labor because labor is a professional team that will come after you hard when they know you not a labor or not sure where you stand. That labor team that is comprised of the police top brass, the prosecutor and the magistrate especially Candia and other star players of Labor will go all out to get you. Now if you are a labor power you can kill and they will play their labor game until the matter is dismissed. Ms George you claim to be a pastors wife but just to remind you that your day will come and God will soon visit you

  3. Ooonn
    August 29, 2023

    Wow. Mister thought he was from Vielle case or living in Vielle case man. Boy only in Vielle case people can grow weed and transport with help from honorable people and no police can arrest them. In fact in Vielle case the easiest way to get immunity for growing and transporting any amount of drugs is by making the parlrep swear you in as council chairman

  4. Lin clown
    August 28, 2023

    You damn LIE All saints all the farmers hava a license in the USA to grow and sell marijuana.Are you telling UWP supporters any and everybody in the USA,Canada and the UK can just grow and sell marijuana?LIAR.

  5. Affa
    August 28, 2023

    These guys’ guns not even to protect their farm from theft anymore, it’s for streets and vexation. Take away the guns.
    However, it’s high time to legalize marijuana and let the small farmer, which is all we have, take full advantage to earn a decent living like others do survive this racist law started by the Kuklux klan in order to jail us by the millions. Stop assisting them.

  6. Zandoli
    August 28, 2023

    If I were the magistrate, I would charge Ronald Charles with insulting the court’s intelligence. I know most of the Dominican defence lawyers give BS mitigating factors to get more lenient sentences, but this one takes the cake. Thus guy is worse than Joshua Francis.

    August 28, 2023

    Angol is a father of 4. are these magistrates blind? Why do they lack empathy?

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 2 Thumb down 7
    • me
      August 28, 2023

      So you violate the law, and your excuse is you are the father of 4…?

      Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 0
    • Eartja E
      August 29, 2023

      100% agree. Domican politicians and judges still have the colonial mentality. USA and other countries are making billions in cannabis sales. Why not do the same in Dominica. Stop relying on the Chinese – just another form of slavery – this time round economic slavery!!!

      Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 1
  8. Bilbo from All Saints
    August 28, 2023

    LOL! This is funny that farmers are still being hunted, charged and prosecuted for growing cannabis. Many places in the world now including USA, Canada and the UK farmers are making large amounts of money from growing cannabis. In Dominica farmers are being fined for growing the same cannabis!

    Where there is no vision, the people perish. I’m surprise that Dominica is not able to see the new trend worldwide with respect to cannabis.

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 5 Thumb down 6
  9. smh
    August 28, 2023

    so they couldn’t at least leave the man three (3) that he allowed to have?

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 1
  10. derp
    August 28, 2023

    Didn’t the government say they were going medicinal with cannabis look last budget meeting they didn’t even make any mention of cannabis, it’s clear this government just wants people to remain poor instead of getting on board with this billion dollar industry, a number of Caribbean countries are even exporting cannabis, but of course not Dominica, they rather people beg and come to them for a living

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 12 Thumb down 3
    • Citizens
      August 29, 2023

      One day all you will study those 400 cases of molestation that taking so long to call in the court there. An leave people making a honest living alone. They not stealing. Even St Vincent, Antigua making money on weed. Dominica they charging you. Me self I making the jail. I not giving all you a dollar.

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