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Chief Magistrate reprimands drug use, promotes tourism

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When visitors come to St Vincent and the Grenadines, they should enjoy our sun, sea, sand, and coconut water, not narcotics.

This was the advice given by Chief Magistrate Rechanne Browne-Matthias to Jackson Rogers, when he stood before the Serious Offences Court on Monday, charged with having 0.7 grams of cocaine in his possession in Bequia on February 25.

Rogers, who spoke with a British accent, pleaded guilty to the charge.

Police officers reported that on Sunday, February 25, 2017, about 3:56 a.m., PC 43 John was on foot patrol in Port Elizabeth. His patrols led him behind the Bequia vegetable market, where he met Rogers and another man.

All three men spoke briefly, but when John identified himself as a police officer, he noticed that Rogers had begun patting himself down.

This aroused John’s suspicions and when he searched Rogers, he found the illegal substance in his right front pocket. Rogers was arrested and taken to the Port Elizabeth police station, where the drugs were weighed in his presence.

On Monday, Rogers told the court that he doesn’t drink alcohol, but on that day, when a fund-raising concert was being held to provide school supplies for the less fortunate, he had been drinking beers and the coke was offered to him, so he tried it.

“It is not a substance that I would like you to try,” Browne-Matthias rebutted.

The Chief Magistrate went on to state that she detests the drug because of its dangers.

“It’s really a substance that wreaks havoc in civilization.”

Browne-Matthias then encouraged Rogers to enjoy the island’s natural attractions, instead of abusing drugs. She scolded him, by pointing out that while he was brought before the court, the persons who offered him the drugs were enjoying what the Grenadine island had to offer.

Rogers was fined EC$400 to be paid forthwith, in default six months imprisonment.

A destruction order was made on the drugs. (AS)

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