Probation for man who admitted to drug charges in Gozo

A British man who admitted to charges of aggravated possession of cocaine and cannabis in Gozo in 2018 has been sentenced to probation by a drugs court due to his clean criminal record

A British man who admitted to charges of aggravated possession of cocaine and cannabis in Gozo in 2018 has been sentenced to probation by a drugs court due to his clean criminal record.

In December 2018, Briton Neil Andrew Bebbington, 43, of Zebbug, Gozo had been charged with possession of cocaine and cannabis in circumstances denoting it was not for his personal use. He was also charged with having cultivated cannabis.

Bebbington was arrested together with Kralev Bagoj, a 22-year-old Bulgarian national who lives in Marsalforn. The latter was sentenced to two years imprisonment after pleading guilty in separate proceedings.

Upon his arraignment, Bebbington’s lawyer, David Gatt, had entered a guilty plea on behalf of the accused and requested the court convert itself into a drugs court, as provided by the Drug Dependence (Treatment not Imprisonment) Act. The court upheld the request and released the man on bail pending sentencing against a deposit of €2,000 and a €10,000 personal guarantee.

In her judgment on the man’s admission, Magistrate Monica Vella observed that the accused collaborated with the Police, had registered an early guilty plea as from the first hearing of the case, has a clean conduct sheet and had applied to attend a rehabilitation programme for drug abuse. “From the report of the Supervision Officer it results that the accused is now leading a life free from abuse of substances and is doing his utmost to keep clean from any substance abuse,” noted the court.

The magistrate placed the man under a probation order for three years and ordered him to pay the expenses incurred by the court.

Inspector Anthony Scerri prosecuted.

READ MORE: Two plead guilty to drugs charges in Gozo

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