AN 18-YEAR-OLD man who tried to smuggle cannabis into Jersey – and began ‘physically shaking’ when stopped by Customs officers – has been fined £1,000.
Charles Swallow arrived in the Island off the ferry from Poole on 30 March with 24 grams of the drug hidden in his black Audi.
Advocate Katie Ridley, prosecuting, told the Magistrate’s Court that Swallow had been questioned by Customs staff at the Harbour, and claimed that he had come to the Island to help his family relocate to Jersey. But she added: ‘He was physically shaking when they questioned him. Officers searched his car and a candle and jar were found. The jar contained plastic bags that contained cannabis.’
He insisted that the cannabis was for his personal use, saying: ‘I only brought the weed for my holiday.’
Advocate Ridley said: ‘He said he did not know it was illegal to import cannabis.
‘He said he had bought it from someone in Southampton but did not know his name.’
Swallow had no previous convictions and had pleaded guilty from the outset, said Advocate Alexander English, defending. He suggested that the offence could be met with a fine, adding: ‘He is mortified.’
Assistant Magistrate Peter Harris said importation of drugs could carry a jail sentence, but took into account the small quantity of drugs involved and the early guilty plea.
He added: ‘You have only just become an adult, so there is a residual youth element.’
He gave Swallow seven days to pay the fine.