Student was selling cannabis at school
A former Berkeley Institute student yesterday received a suspended sentence for supplying cannabis on the school grounds.
Kiarron Minks admitted in January to supplying cannabis to another student and possessing cannabis in an increased penalty zone.
Magistrates’ Court heard that school staff saw Minks and another student, 17-year-old Bryan McIntosh, with plant-like material on the Pembroke campus on November 3.
A total of 4.4g of the controlled drug was found hidden in Minks’ school tie; another 0.7g of cannabis was found in McIntosh’s tie.
Minks, 18, voluntarily withdrew from the high school because he believed he was going to be expelled.
McIntosh pleaded guilty to a charge of possessing cannabis last year. He is to be sentenced, pending the outcome of a social inquiry report.
He told police he approached Minks after hearing that he had “high-grade” cannabis. Minks produced several paper twists from his tie, saying McIntosh could take two for $10.
Yesterday, Minks’ lawyer Charles Richardson asked Senior Magistrate Archibald Warner for lenience in his sentencing. He said that his client understood cannabis was illegal but didn’t fully realise the consequences of what he did at the time.
“I don’t think he appreciated that it could result in a custodial sentence, but he appreciates that now,” Mr Richardson said.
“He is not a drug dealer. He is a young man, and I would think that this court would want to see him use all of his potential, and that this offence will not handcuff him forever.”
Mr Warner noted Minks’ age and said: “Part of this sentence must represent a deterrent to others, other schoolboys who would dare to engage in this activity.
“This is a serious offence, an offence which, not withstanding your personal circumstances, merits an immediate custodial sentence. No probation, no slap on the wrist, because people like you and your peers need an opportunity to go to school, and you don’t go to school to sell drugs.”
He sentenced Minks to six months in prison, however all but the 35 days Minks has already served were suspended for two years.
Mr Warner also ordered that Minks be placed on two years’ probation, with the condition that he refrain from using drugs, submit to random drug testing and continue to further his education.