87 Cannabis Plants, 1 Farmer, 12 Years Imprisonment

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A 37-year-old farmer has been sentenced to 12 years im­prisonment with a non-pa­role period of 10 years after he was convicted for one count of unlaw­ful cultivation of illicit drugs.
Nemani Ravia appeared before Justice Salesi Temo at the High Court in Suva, yesterday.
On June 9, 2017, at Naqia village, Wainibuka, Tailevu, without law­ful authority, Ravia cultivated 87 plants of cannabis sativa, an illicit drug, weighing 34.2 kilograms.
While sentencing the man, Justice Temo said the evils of illicit drugs have been well debated in parlia­ment over the years.
He said the amount of illicit drugs cultivated by the accused was huge and of a high imprisonment term category.
The court heard that the accused was remanded in custody while awaiting trial for 58 days.
The court also heard that the ac­cused had a farm on a hill about an hour’s traveling distance away from his house in Tailevu where he had cultivated the illicit drugs.
The Police through their investi­gations had questioned the accused to which the accused co-operated and showed them the farm.
The Police officers had taken the plants for analysis which was later proven to be cannabis sativa weigh­ing 34.2 kilograms.
Justice Temo also ordered that the drugs were to be destroyed by the Chief Registrar’s office with the as­sistance of the Police if no appeal was filed within 40 days from the day of sentencing.
Ravia was given 30 days to appeal his sentence to the Fiji Court of Ap­peal.

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