Levi Gregoire is to pay fines amounting to $12,750, due by March 31, 2012 or face more than a year in prison, after pleading guilty to two drug and three firearms charges before Magistrate Evalina Baptiste yesterday.
The-32-year old Gregoire was charged jointly with his common-law wife, 28-year-old Derissa Lavenier, both of Grandbay.
Police reported that during a search of the defendants’ home in Grand Bay on the morning of August 12, 368 grams of cannabis along with a .38 spent shell, one round of .25 ammunition and one round of .357 ammunition were found.
The police said Gregoire stated that he had found the ammunition while cleaning the Bubbles Disco and had taken them home.
The two were charged with possession of cannabis, possession of cannabis with intent to supply and one charge of possession of illegal ammunition for each kind. Lavenier pleaded not guilty and Gregoire pleaded guilty to all charges. Lavenier’s charges were subsequently dismissed since the prosecution did not present a case against her.
Wayne Norde, speaking on behalf of his client, asked the court to consider that this was his client’s first possession, he had not wasted the court’s time, admitted to the possession of the ganja and explained how he had happened upon the ammunition and he inadvertently taken them home.
Magistrate Baptiste disagreed stating, “There was nothing inadvertent about it.” She said that she was bound by the law to consider that this was Gregoire’s first offense and that he had pleaded guilty, but was also concerned by the fact that such offences had become prevalent.
The magistrate sentenced Gregoire to fines thus:
1. On the charge of possession of cannabis, a fine of $1,750 to be paid by February 28, 2012 or five months imprisonment.
2. On the charge of possession of cannabis with intent to supply, a fine of $4,000 to be paid by February 28, 2012 or six months imprisonment to run concurrently with the other charge of possession of cannabis.
3. On the charge of possession of .25 ammunition, a fine of $4,500 to be paid by February 28, 2012 or nine months imprisonment.
4. On the charge of possession of .357 ammunition, a fine of $2,500 to be paid by February 28, 2012 or six months imprisonment to run concurrently with the other charge of possession of ammunition.
5. On the charge of possession of .38 ammunition, no separate sentence.
In response to Norde’s plea for an extension in the time allotted to pay the fines, Magistrate Baptiste revised the due date to March 31, 2012.
Gregoire was also subsequently charged along with Aaron Gregoire and Louis Gregoire, also of Grand Bay and Suzelle Gama of Guadeloupe and released on bail of $32,000. They were all charged with possession of illegal firearms including an AK-47.