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Stuart J
Stuart J, Solicitor
Category: UK Law
Satisfied Customers: 22400
Experience:  PGD Law. 20 years legal profession, 6 as partner in High Street practice
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My son was arrested yesterday for possession with intent to

Customer Question

My son was arrested yesterday for possession with intent to supply. He was found with 20 ecstasy tablets at a festival and £320 . He had a small amount of cannabis. He is 18 this is his first offence. He has agreed to attend a substance misuse program as he has become dependent on cannabis . He was arrested following a covert operation by police at the festival. I feel he should plead guilty, as he is very young for his age and naive but am worried re a custodial sentence. Is this very likely ?.
JA: Since laws vary from place to place, what state is this in? And when did this happen?
Customer: sorry I thought this was a UK law site ??
JA: Have you talked to a lawyer yet?
Customer: Yes but i dont think he absorbed much of the advice last night and was guided to respond " no Comment"
JA: What advice did they give you?
Customer: respond no comment
JA: Anything else you think the lawyer should know?
Customer: they took his phone and he says there are numerous texts relating to requests to buy cannabis
Submitted: 3 months ago.
Category: UK Law
Expert:  Stuart J replied 3 months ago.

Good morning. Thank you for the question. It is my pleasure to assist you with this today.

What do you want to know about this?

Expert:  Stuart J replied 3 months ago.

Unless you son can prove that someone slipped these into his pocket (very little chance of doing that) unknowingly, he would be better pleading not guilty.

To be honest, even if he ran that defence, it’s likely to fail because it’s such a weak defence, it really will not help in getting the lowest sentence possible.

Based upon the evidence, I agree with you that he would be better off pleading guilty because that will show remorse and generally lead to a one third reduction in the sentence.

Possession with intent to supply is far more serious than possession. He could not argue these were for personal use firstly because he had so many and secondly because he had so much money on him.

The texts are also pretty damning in respect of the cannabis.

Here are the definitive sentencing guidelines

http://www.sentencingcouncil.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/Drug_Offences_Definitive_Guideline_final_web1.pdf

Possession with intent to supply starts on page 9 and possession starts on page 29.

Sentences are on page 33

9 this would be lesser role, category 3 as he is selling directly to users (page 11).

Then look at the class of drug,

https://www.gov.uk/penalties-drug-possession-dealing (ecstasy is classed as class a along with heroin and cocaine)

and go to page 12.

I’m sorry to have to tell you that even a lesser role for a category 3 offence carries a custodial sentence of 2-4.5 years custody.

Depending on the amount of cannabis, he may be charged with possession with intent to supply although whatever sentence he gets in respect of the cannabis is going to be concurrent with the ecstasy charge.

However, for a first offence, he may get the sentence suspended but that would mean that if he reoffended at all (even a tiny amount of possession) he would get prosecuted for a new offence and be incarcerated for the original offence for breaching the suspension terms.

Does that answer the question? Can I answer any specific points arising from this? Please do not forget to use the rating service to rate my answer positively. Unless you rate it positive, I don’t get paid.

You may get the impression that the thread closes after rating, but it does not, it remains open and I can still answer your posts if anything needs clarification.

Kind regards

Stuart

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