Judge suspends sentence in drug cultivation case, says prisoner accepted error of his ways

    A man has had his prison sentence for cultivating marijuana suspended for two years.

    Filomila Kaufusi pleaded guilty on May 4 this year of cultivating 17 cannabis plants, weighing 94.45 grams.

    In the Supreme Court, Judge Niu, presiding, sentenced Kaufusi to two and-a-half years in prison, but suspended the sentence for two years on condition that he did not commit any offence punishable by imprisonment within those two years.

    The judge said the prisoner’s probation officer had recommended a full suspension of sentence.

    The officer said Kaufusi was working for a construction company making cyclone relief houses.

    The judge said letters written by Kaufusi’s bishop and his village’s town officer spoke highly and warmly changes he had made to your life.

    “I accept that evidence,” Judge Niu said.

    “They are evidence that you will make use of the opportunity, if it be given to you, to continue to make a worthwhile life for you and for your wife and for your children.

    “If I was to sentence you to prison without suspension, you would   lose your job, you would be separated from your wife and children.

    “You would be thrown back to the deep end where you were, to be together with the other convicts whom you are now trying to distance yourself from. I do not consider that justice demands that.

    “You have truly shown your remorse by pleading guilty and accepting the error of your ways and you have rehabilitated yourself already. I do not need to be convinced that you will make use of the opportunity of suspension because you have already shown it.”

    Judge Niu ordered that the drugs confiscated from the prisoner be destroyed.

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