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Lewis convicted after 10 months


After languishing in prison for over ten months, awaiting the results of a drug test from the Barbados Forensic Sciences Centre, 56 year-old Jamaican national, Egbert Lewis now knows his fate.

He was sentenced to 22 months for possessing 1,040 grams (2.29 pounds) of cocaine with intent to export.{{more}}

His defence that he was set up by the arresting officer Police Constable Pedro Harry whom he claimed told him he wanted to send him to jail for “men to b*** you” did not hold water with Chief Magistrate Simone Churaman.

He however got 10 months was shaved off the possession charge and three months off the intent to export charge given the time he already served.

Lewis’ clash with the law was on January 3, 2006 at the E.T Joshua airport.

Arresting officer PC Harry recalled being in the departure area where he saw the defendant with his carry-on luggage between his legs.

Identifying himself he asked Lewis to see his ticket after which the police officer requested a search of his lugguage. After taking him to an examination room Harry took out all the clothing from the luggage but it still felt heavy.

He then noticed that the bottom of the suitcase had been modified and proceeded to unscrew the bottom. By this time Lewis became highly agitated and started cursing.

“Who is going to pay for my suitcase?” Lewis asked before fleeing from the room only to be caught by a security guard.

He was taken to the Narcotics base where the suitcase was opened in his presence and a black taped package was found glued to the false bottom.

He was cautioned but replied: “Ah nuh my ting dat, ah nuh my suitcase”.

The drugs were weighed in his presence.

In Lewis’ evidence to the court, he said that the suitcase was not his.

“I did not want to see the content of the suitcase because I knew it was not mine,” he said.

Lewis said that the officers took the clothing from his bag and put them in someone else’s bag.

Lewis further claimed that Harry told him: “Is your bag, and I will send you to jail to make men b*** you,” he said.

His case was in danger of dismissal after the prosecution failed, up to September, to offer evidence saying the results had not been received from Barbados. Investigations by SEARCHLIGHT revealed that Barbados withheld the results because of arrears owed by the police for drugs tests done since January. Barbados had been doing tests free of cost but with the opening of the new Forensic Sciences Centre, the Barbados government started charging a fee to its clients, one of which is St Vincent and the Grenadines.