Calibishie man loses appeal, goes to jail

George being led away after he lost his appeal

Luford George, a 36-year-old man of Calibishie is expected to spend the next three years at the State prison after he lost his appeal against a sentence for possession of a controlled drug.

He appeared before the Eastern Caribbean Court of Appeal on Thursday.

In 2009, George was convicted for possession of 319 pounds of marijuana and was fined $638,000 by then magistrate, Tiyani Behanzin.

At the appeal court hearing, George was unrepresented but Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP), Gene Pestaina, conceded to the court that the fine was “manifestly excessive” and proposed a fine of $50,000.

However, George told the court that he was a “construction worker” who earned $400 a week and would only be able to pay EC$100 a month if the $50,000 was imposed.

Not amused, the court told George that what he was proposing was clearly not acceptable and he needed to speak out if they were to assist him. A lawyer in the court came to his assistance but it was clear that George was not prepared to pay any fine.

When George’s file was examined, it was revealed that just a year ago he was fined for possession of illegal drugs on two occasions.

“He has not learnt his lesson and from his previous experiences … He is not a first time offender and a means test conducted by the court shows he does not have the means to pay a fine,” the judges said.

They also agreed that the fine was “excessive” but also stated that while they will allow the appeal against sentence in part. “You are therefore sentenced to three years in jail starting today,” the judges stated.

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45 Comments

  1. Herbs
    November 18, 2012

    Why is this man going to jail for drugs that is not his?!

  2. Cesare Bonventre
    November 18, 2012

    Why is cannibis demonized?

    In the USA, due to the medical benefits and lack of side effects, Washington and Colorado states have formally legalized it!

    Meanwhile, according to the Lancet & NE Journal of Medicine last year, alcohol is more deadly to the human body, physiologically, than PCP, Cocaine, Methamphetamine, and heroin!

    The medical benefits of cannibis are extaordinary. So why banned? Cause the USA, which has imprisoned 1 in 32 at an annual cost of over $600 Billion a year says so?! Well no longer! Both law enforcement and Calvinists in the government are finally coming to their senses.

    When will Dominica come to its senses with cannibis? Rather than to demonize something simply because it makes you “feel good”, why not profit from it? It sure is far safer than alcohol!

  3. November 18, 2012

    The man just decided to plant weed to feed his family instead of robbing for a living. What all you want the man to do burgar??????

  4. November 18, 2012

    The only solution to this problem in Dominica is to legalize the weed and see how much tourist that will come to Dominica. Instead of doing that they are legalizing murder. Don’t you see that tourist will keep away from the island. Legalize the marijuana and see how the economy will begin to bloom. The youths will be less frustrated. So long all do not realize that is poverty that is leading to all those murders and robbery that is taking place in our beautiful island Dominica.

    • Cesare Bonventre
      November 18, 2012

      According to the Lancet & NE Journal of Medicine last year, alcohol is more deadly to the human body, physiologically, than PCP, Cocaine, Methamphetamine, and heroin!

  5. not nice
    November 17, 2012

    ok he was convicted for a controlled substance but come on he is still human they wanted to send him to jail hence taht harsh fine. now as for murder in dominica? hmm its ok to kill weed is the only crime.

  6. Justice and Truth
    November 17, 2012

    He is in the construction business and is making $400 a week. This is $1,600 a month. He cannot afford to pay a fine on terms? Why did he find it necessary to trade in illegal drugs? Did he not expect to be caught? I hope he learns a lesson.

  7. it hurting us all
    November 17, 2012

    I would have charged him $1,000,000.00. those drug dealers slowly killing our young people….see how salisbury young men just finishing in drugs! drug is creating criminals, it’s consuming our human resources, gosh it’s crippling our economony indirectly! HARD JAIL AND AGRICULTURAL LADOUR FOR DRUG DEALS!!!

    • Cesare Bonventre
      November 18, 2012

      How is cannibis hurting?

      According to the Lancet & NE Journal of Medicine last year, alcohol is more deadly to the human body, physiologically, than PCP, Cocaine, Methamphetamine, and heroin!

      So why not ban alcohol?

  8. November 16, 2012

    the same prisoners tiyani is talkin about tryin to play like he so concern about all of a sudden most of them was sent to jail because of behanzin he
    charge them big bucks or big jail hypocrite man,tiyani u doin that to give the country bad name but remember u were part of it and still part of it fire will burn people like u

  9. Sukie...Sukie
    November 16, 2012

    ahway… 3 years for illegal possession and what the MURDERS get … BAIL…
    them judges and lawyers God have to punish allu…wickeders..

  10. November 16, 2012

    hw in god’s name can he b wrong?wen he was a judge d place was much more quiet.give him bak his dammmm position.he sure as hell deserves it more dan some of d odas dem

  11. Anonymous
    November 16, 2012

    $638,000 fine for possession of 319 pounds of marijuana and Tyani wants to play god sent today! corruption will never done

  12. Rastafari
    November 16, 2012

    You all NEED to understand that if the drugs are to aid the poor, it won’t be tolerated. I.E., if the BIG man does not call the shots, the little fellow goes down. Prison is BIG business and someone is making a h3ll lot of VAT FREE money, but it’s not the ones who need it most.

  13. November 16, 2012

    Look at him, Mister smiling. All of you who support legalizing mariguana may have a point, lets all get high then we will notice even less whats happening to our country. We will no longer need to close our eyes, we will be able to see everything in plain view but our besotted brain will not comprehend whats going on. Thats what i call taking it to the next level

    • Anonymous
      November 16, 2012

      shut your mouth its hiding under your bed, your damn hypo.

    • Justice and Truth
      November 17, 2012

      As Adam and Eve? :lol: I can see clearly now the rain has gone… :lol: What a country it would be with all those high on illegal drugs. It would surely go down the drain. Who would visit there? Well, you would have the country all to yourselves for visitors will fear going there. I foresee what chaos would exist and worst crimes/murders. It is bad enough with crimes/murders.

  14. Fair
    November 16, 2012

    hope tiyani ensure that this man is not abused while in prison.Did he ever visit the prison to observe the conditions as a magistrate

  15. padna
    November 15, 2012

    my boy smiling n ting but is cry mister want to cry ner

  16. ThinK DeeP
    November 15, 2012

    the fine was not excessive… all that ganja has a greater value than the fine…. !!

  17. A Observer
    November 15, 2012

    Have they not heard marijuana is beeing legalize in certain states in the US for recreation purposes?. All these young people going to jail or being charged so excessively for a herb is rediculous. I say legalize the herb for people over 18, the same as cigarette and rum, may creat some form of revenue.

    • D/a guy in antigua
      November 15, 2012

      why dont you start shiping to this us to sele if you know all that about it or you can take 100 lb to the us to see how much it legalize

    • Hmmm
      November 16, 2012

      All the proponents of legalizing weed seem to forget the detrimental effects of marijuana

      The short-term effects of marijuana include:
      •Distorted perception (sights, sounds, time, touch)

      •Problems with memory and learning

      •Loss of coordination

      •Trouble with thinking and problem-solving

      •Increased heart rate, reduced blood pressure

      Sometimes marijuana use can also produce anxiety, fear, distrust, or panic.

      So when you talk about legalizing think about this drug in the hands of the young people who are supposed to lead the nation.

    • Carlos
      November 16, 2012

      Absolutely disagree with this point. If you allow one drug, you have to allow all drugs.

      Dominica is one of the freest countries in the world in drug possession terms. 319 pounds is life in prison in the US, so he is VERY lucky.

      If you’re carrying 319 pounds of drugs, then you’re in for some trouble.

    • Justice and Truth
      November 17, 2012

      I would not follow the U.S. The U.S. is no good example. It is a real mess, going down the drain/slippery slopes. The situation is already bad. When it comes to godlessness and immorality, the U.S. is in a bad shape. It is a real mess. The worst is yet to come and it is coming, slowly.

  18. Anonymous
    November 15, 2012

    Is it that you are saying that because Tiyani Behanzin sentenced him to jail that Mr. behanzin cannot speak about the possibility of inhumane treatment of prisoners there ? Tiyani was a magistrate, a creature of statute and he was following the law. That is an issue separate and apart from conditions at a prison.

  19. Grandbarian
    November 15, 2012

    I don’t understand why someone gets so much time for drug and they walk away for murder.

    • frenchii
      November 15, 2012

      so true…..they kill yet they bail them and they never serve time for killing…..the government and the judicial system should take this seriously…..let the americans show us how they deal with their criminals…unless u got proof they didnt do it they stay in jail..thats how it should be….the direct effect of this is tourists seem to be avoiding this country now….open ure eyes ppl….u got our ppl scared cause its not suprising evryone who kills goes free

    • (.) (.)
      November 15, 2012

      You are so right but it’s the system everywhere

    • Anonymous
      November 16, 2012

      this is so true……..and to think of it its just a damn herb…..

  20. Creds
    November 15, 2012

    There is something drastically wrong with this country.

    Marijuana deserves 3 years in jail ? Yet people who have committed all kinds of bobol and criminal acts walk free.

  21. ()
    November 15, 2012

    I am not in that drug thing. These people are killing the youths of this country.Let him serve his time.

  22. blessed baby
    November 15, 2012

    murders on the streets
    rapists on the streets

    marijuana sends people to jail

    wonder what message that sends to criminals/

    kill and rape but stay faaaaaaaaaar from weed

  23. Labar rat
    November 15, 2012

    I know of this chap from St Lucia who was caught in Barbados with 50 grams of coke and he was given 50 years. 319 pounds of weed is a lot of weed and a lot of money too and if $638 K is too much why blame the drug dealers.

  24. mouth of the south
    November 15, 2012

    this guy is smiling away… do 3 years easily without paying 50 g’s lol

  25. Dominican in Toronto
    November 15, 2012

    I don’t get these criminals and drug dealers, they commit the crime but to not want to suffer the consequences. what they think this is. But again with all the lawlessness that happening in Dominica soon all criminals and drug dealers will be walking the street at large.

  26. rescue 911
    November 15, 2012

    marijuanna jail.murder and attempted murder, home

  27. The Onlooker
    November 15, 2012

    The question one should ask having heard the judgement in this case is where does Tiyani Behanzin feature in the scheme of things’ WHAT IS HIS POSITION ON THE CONDITIONS UNDER WHICH MR.GEORGE IS BEING HELD AT THE STATE PRISON GIVEN THAT HE WAS SENTENCED BY HIM.

    • Emilien
      November 15, 2012

      Tiyani stood up to say something and the Chief Judge told him SIT DOWN! Was there saw it all.

  28. Pondera
    November 15, 2012

    Coundn’t pay the fine but can afford to appeal the case? If he is doing drugs, he has the money to pay. Behanzi did not just slap a figure on him. He must have known of his ability to pay the fine.

  29. see n blind !!
    November 15, 2012

    drug men tek more jail dan murderaz

  30. Voice Of The Ghetto
    November 15, 2012

    Free up the herbs!!!!

    All the murderers outside living life happy and the man on the streets with the weed getting jail time…. Look a society

  31. ROSEAU O VALLEY
    November 15, 2012

    PROPER judgment but definitely TOO EXCESSIVE a fine from Tiyani. I wander when will he get this right every year the COA disregarding aspects of his decisions. I guess Sir Hugh Wooding Law School will help him because he now has LEC. I;being in the know,hope that more litigants come represented and am happy that lawyers and the DPP personnel came to his assistance. There is still hope. I pray that he changes and is restored to normal life after his sentence.

  32. Anonymous
    November 15, 2012

    he did not loose the appeal. the appeal was upheld however the sentence was varied. they clearly said that bihanzin was wrong.

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