A 39-year-old man has been given a 45-months jail term for being in possession of marijuana.
He was also sentenced for escaping from police custody early this year.
Justice Leiataualesa Daryl Clarke handed down the ruling in the Supreme Court yesterday morning.
The police summary of facts presented to the court indicated that Lagalaga Misiluki had previous convictions for reoffending by escaping from prison. In January 14 this year he escaped from the Tafaigata Prison and returned voluntarily the same day. Prison officers discovered 52 marijuana cigarettes wrapped up in pieces of foil when they searched him, with the contraband weighing 39.6 grams.
The court heard that the accused started offending in 2004 for burglary and theft and continued to reoffend through his multiple escapes from prison.
When the Judge asked the accused if he had something to say, Lagalaga expressed remorse and said he escape prison in 2016 because he wanted to confirm if his family had disowned him.
“Your honor, the reason why I escaped from prison in 2016 was because I was told that my family disowned me so I wanted to see if it was true.
“In 2017 when I escape again I went to seek for my family’s forgiveness and the marijuana that was in my possess was given to me by one of my village friend so I brought it with me when I came back to prison at that time. It was for my own personal use and I did not have any intention of selling it inside prison,” he told the court.
However, the Judge in response told the accused that he to change his life as he has spent a long time in prison.
“Lagalaga you are no longer a young man and you have spent a lot of your life in prison. I encourage you to change your life. Nobody else can change your life because you, yourself can only do that.”
Justice Leiataualesa said his ruling should send out a strong message to deter others from committing similar crimes.