Amosa Amani, who is charged with possession of 72 marijuana seeds, has been sentenced to nine months in jail.
The sentence was handed down by Chief Justice, Tiavasu’e Patu Falefatu Sapolu.
Prosecuting the case was lawyer, Fuifui Ioane, of the Attorney General’s Office while the defendant stood in court pro-se.
According to the Police Summary of facts, on 15 March 2017, Amani was accompanied by several men next to a green pick-up vehicle without a front windshield not far from the Faleolo Police Post.
“Three Police officers came and dispersed you and your mates. You were then instructed by the Police to drive the pick-up vehicle to the Faleolo Police Post.”
“This is a vehicle which was given to you for repairs because you are a mechanic.”
“When the Police searched the vehicle at the Faleolo Police Post, they found marijuana seeds scattered on the seat of the vehicle.”
“These were collected and counted by the Police. It amounted to 34 marijuana seeds.”
“You had also been seen by a prosecution witness throwing a paper bag under the rear tyres of the pick-up vehicle where it was parked at the reserve on the opposite side of the road from the Faleolo International Airport terminal.”
“A Police officer picked up this paper bag and it was found to contain 72 marijuana seeds.”
“You were therefore charged by the Police with possession of 106 marijuana seeds.”
“Because you had pleaded not guilty to the charges, you were not eligible for referral to the Alcohol and Drugs Court (A.D.C.) to undergo any of the rehabilitation programmes of that Court,” says the Police report.
The supplementary pre-sentence report shows the defendant has a previous conviction of possession of narcotics, namely marijuana in July 2016.
He was sentenced to six months supervision and ordered to attend the A.D.C.’s Toe Afua Se Taeao Fou rehabilitation programme.
“However, you are now appearing again before the Court for the same type of offence.”
“You also have previous convictions for theft and trespass in 2015, for which you were convicted and fined $400.”
“Your wife told the probation service that you are a hardworking and dependable person.”
“This is the same thing your wife told the probation service in 2015 as shown from your pre-sentence report of that year,” stated the Chief Justice.
The quantity of marijuana seeds found in his possession is an aggravating feature relating to his offending.