Cannabis smuggler jailed for almost nine years

The man had initially pleaded not guilty to trafficking and possession of the two kilograms of cannabis grass that was found in the lining of his jacket

(File Photo)
(File Photo)

A man who was found in possession of cannabis upon his arrival from Sicily in 2014 has been jailed for eight and a half years.

The man, Martin Aghanti, 34, of Nigeria, had initially pleaded not guilty to trafficking and possession of the two kilograms of cannabis grass that was found in the lining of his jacket.

Aghanti had been stopped by officers of the Customs’ enforcement unit as he stepped off the ferry from Pozzallo, Sicily as part of random checks.

When his luggage was passed through the X-ray machine suspicious objects were seen and upon further inspection of the accused’s luggage, two packages were found inside the lining of a black jacket, which was inside a backpack and which he had been carrying. Almost two kilograms of cannabis grass, having a street value of €48,775 were found inside the packages

At a late stage in proceedings, after the case had been appointed for a jury trial, Aghanti had changed his plea to one of guilt.

Judge Giovanni Grixti, having seen the man’s admission and having given him time to reconsider, sentenced Aghanti to 8 years, six months in jail, together with a €20,000 fine. All moveable and immovable property belonging to him was forfeited in favour of the government, as happens with every drugs trial.

The drugs are to be destroyed.

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