A 16-YEAR-OLD grade 10 pupil of Lubuto in Ndola has been placed on 24 months probation by the magistrate’s court for trafficking in 4.2 grammes of marijuana.
Chief resident magistrate Paul Chisha convicted the juvenile last Wednesday after he pleaded guilty to a charge of trafficking in a psychotrophic substance, contrary to the Laws of Zambia.
The accused told the court that the drugs he was found with were not for sale, but for personal use (smoking).
In passing the sentence, Mr Chisha advised the juvenile offender to desist from abusing drugs because they could ruin his future.
Particulars of the offence are that the juvenile, on June 5 this year in Ndola, did traffic in 4.2 grammes of marijuana, a herbal product of cannabis sativa, without lawful authority.
“I have heard the facts and am satisfied that they disclose the offence charged. Based on your own admission of the same as being correct, I find you guilty as charged,” magistrate Chisha said.
“I have, however, considered that you are a juvenile offender who is school-going. I advise that engaging yourself in drugs is a danger to your future and health. Reform from such kind of conduct. I therefore place you on 24 months’ probation, within which period you will be under the supervision of a probation officer from the Social Welfare Department,” Mr Chisha said.
In mitigation, the juvenile offender pleaded for leniency so that he could complete his education and become a better citizen, who could contribute to meaningful development of the country.
And presenting a social welfare report to the court, probation officer Jessie Njobvu said it was sad that the number of juveniles who come in conflict with the law has reached alarming levels.
Particulars of the case are that on the material day, Edwin Mwanza, an officer from the Drug Enforcement Commission, received a call from Mushili Police Post that they had in their custody a juvenile who was found with one ball of marijuana wrapped in a paper.
When Mr Mwanza rushed there, he found the suspect with the said drugs. The suspect was transferred to Ndola Central Police Station. The suspected drugs were taken for chemical analysis at the Food and Drugs Control Laboratory in Lusaka, where they were proven to be cannabis.