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Malian bags two years jail term over possession of herbal drink mixed with marijuana

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Justice Tijjani Ringim of a Federal High Court sitting in Lagos has convicted and sentenced a Malian, Mohammed Dambele, to two years imprisonment, for being in possession of a herbal drink laced with Cannabis Sativa, popularly called Marijuana.

The judge sentenced Dambele to two years imprisonment after he pleaded guilty to the one-count amended charge brought against him by National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA).

The prosecutor, Paul Awogbuyi, had told the court that the convict was arrested on September 27, 2022, at Ebute-Ero jetty, Lagos Island, Lagos, with 400 bottles of Al Hil herbal mixture, popularly known as “akuskura”.

Awogbuyi told the court that the herbal mixture was laced with Cannabis Sativa also known as Marijuana, which he said was a prohibited substance, that he attempted to export to his country, Mali.

The prosecution counsel said his offenses contravened 11(b) of NDLEA Act Cap N30 Laws of the Federation of Nigeria (LFN) 2004, and are punishable under the same Act.

But the defense counsel, Mr. G. O. Okaka, pleaded with the court to tamper justice with mercy in sentencing him. He told the court that his client never knew that the product is prohibited since it has the National Agency for Food and Drugs Administration and Control (NAFDAC) approval number.

Justice Ringim after listening to the defense counsel cited various decided cases, convicted and sentenced Dambele to two years imprisonment. He ordered that the convict’s jail term commences on September 27, 2022, when he was arrested.

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