Increase penalty for marijuana traders: Magistrate


A MAGISTRATE has called on lawmakers to increase the maximum penalty for those involved in marijuana trading to more than two years.
Madang District Court Magistrate Ben Kome jailed Kune Eriano, 40, to two years in jail yesterday after 10kg of marijuana was found on him while on his way from Goroka to Madang.
Magistrate Kome told the court that if the maximum penalty for such an offence had been 50 years or 60 years in prison, he would have imposed it. The court heard that on Dec 10, 2020, Eriano of Sitoka village in the Ungai-Bena district of Eastern Highlands was accosted while travelling from Goroka to Madang.
Police officers manning a checkpoint at Tapo Creek stopped the vehicle he was in and searched it.
They discovered the drugs.
Magistrate Kome called on the Government to relook at the Drug and Distillation Act and amend it because law and order problems in this country were mostly caused by people involved in marijuana and homebrew trading.
He told Eriano that the quantity of drugs police found on him was bigger than the years that he would serve in court. He said the drugs would harm the people buying it.

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