Numbers seller forfeits cash

When Delroy White was sentenced last week for selling lottery tickets, all monies he had when arrested were forfeited to the Crown. The various sums totalled $3,662, although White claimed that $600 of that amount was for his rent.

White, 66, was also ordered to perform 40 hours of community service. Magistrate Valdis Foldats said he could impose this sentence under the Alternative Sentencing Law. He indicated that he chose this procedure because the maximum sentence under the Gambling Law is a fine of $40 or two months imprisonment.

“You were carrying on a significant gambling operation,” he told White.

Crown counsel Toyin Salako said White was arrested on June 6 after police attended the parking lot of a bar on Shedden Road at 10:30 a.m. White was in a car parked in the lot and police asked him to account for his presence.

When he remained silent, officers asked him to come out of the vehicle. He was asked if he was doing numbers and he replied, “What – are you going to arrest me?”

As a result, officers checked his vehicle and person. They found $3,497 in various bundles, receipt books, a piece of paper with a list of names, three numbers books, two calendars and a six-inch kitchen knife. He also had $165 on his person.

White admitted that all the money was from gambling except for the $600. He explained that he kept the knife so he would feel safe; he said he did not know it was an offense to carry it outside his premises.

He entered his guilty pleas on September 24 and the magistrate ordered a social inquiry report.

This report was referred to on Thursday before the magistrate passed sentence. He said White, with no previous convictions, was a responsible, mature individual. His wife had been shocked to find out that he was involved in numbers, but she was not angry. White had medical issues that had caused financial difficulties and had just finished paying off his medical bills. He was remorseful and afraid of going to jail.

The magistrate said the penalty in the Gambling Law is low, but he had to send a message to would-be offenders. That was why he went to the Alternative Sentencing Law for this offence. [Chief Magistrate Nova Hall used the same approach in 2011.]

No conviction was recorded for possession of the offensive weapon.

“I’m sure you’ve learned your lesson,” the magistrate told White.