Addict sold $2 rocks to support habit

Audwin Oswald Smith has received five years imprisonment for selling cocaine in order to feed his own habit.

A major factor in Justice Alex Henderson sentencing Friday was Smith’s failure to take advantage of treatment opportunities.

Smith, 40, was arrested in July 2004 in the Swamp in George Town. Smith admitted possession with intent to supply.

He was found with nine pieces of what appeared to be cocaine in rock form. He said he purchased a big rock and then chipped off smaller pieces, using some and selling others for $2 and $3. He had on him at the time 41 one dollar notes, one $10, four $5 and US$2.

In Summary Court he was given the opportunity to take treatment in the community.

After more than a dozen court mention dates, two of which he missed, Smith was sentenced in August 2006. The magistrate said he had failed to take advantage of the opportunities given him.

In Grand Court on Friday, Attorney John Furniss rounded accepted that Smith had been in breach of a previously suspended sentence. He had stolen from family members and was on probation when he committed this offence. He continued using drugs and failed to attend counselling.

Mr. Furniss suggested that the chances given to him by the magistrate might have been ‘rather too early in the day for him to start on the process of rehabilitation.’

He asked if Smith should get four and a half years because he failed to assist himself.

Justice Henderson said it was wrong in principle to isolate the cocaine offence and then the two failures to surrender.

Crack cocaine is in the process of ruining a significant segment of the community, the judge said.

Given the ravages caused by cocaine, given the fact that Smith was on probation at the time of his offence and was making a profit from it and given the fact that he made no effort to use the services offered, five years was not excessive, he said.

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