Two minors sentenced to 16 years for smuggling illegal drugs

The Juvenile Court has sentenced a 16 year-old Maldivian boy and 16 year-old girl to 16 years imprisonment for smuggling 1.5 kilograms of cannabis into the Maldives.

November 30, 2009, customs officials at Male’ International Airport searched the luggage of a girl who just arrived to Male’ from Trivandrum with another woman.

The officials discovered the illegal substances wrapped in a new bed sheet inside her luggage. The girl surrendered the drugs to customs and told the officials that she had more hidden inside her body.

A total of 1.5 kilograms of cannabis were found with her according to the Juvenile Court.

The girl was then handed over to police who conducted a special operation to determine the intended recipient of the drugs, leaving the girl and the woman inside a guest house.

Police determined that the 16 year-old boy was the recipient when he came in to the guest house to receive the drugs from the girl, and arrested him.

The boy was charged in the Juvenile Court with assisting to smuggle illegal drugs into the country and possessing illegal drugs with the intention to distribute.

The substances obtained from the girl’s luggage and her body tested positive to THC – the active ingredient in cannabis – when police tested them. Three police officers told the court that the result of the test was valid.

Both the girl and the boy were prosecuted under the old Drug Act because the constitution states that the penalty of a crime should be determined by the law in existence at the time when the crime was committed.

According to the Juvenile Court, the woman was also arrested in connection with the case. Her trial is continuing in the Criminal Court.