A man who is currently incarcerated at Northward Prison was sentenced Tuesday to 30 months additional imprisonment for possession of ganja with intent to supply.

Randy James Parchment, who has five years left on a sentence for possession of an unlicensed firearm, pleaded guilty to the drug crime. Mr. Parchment had been sentenced to seven years for possession of the handgun and a concurrent seven years for possession of unlicensed ammunition in 2016.

Crown counsel Kenneth Ferguson, reading the facts of the drug case in court Tuesday, said Mr. Parchment was transported to a medical appointment at Cayman Islands Hospital and asked to use the restroom. After exiting, the police noticed he was walking strangely and found a package secured inside his pants.

The package was found to hold three phones, three phone chargers, cigarette paper and .38 kilograms of a vegetable-like matter that later proved to be ganja. Mr. Ferguson said that the cigarette paper constituted evidence that Mr. Parchment intended to sell the ganja at Northward.

Defense attorney Richard Barton said that Mr. Parchment should be given credit for an early guilty plea and asked Magistrate Valdis Foldats to keep totality in mind when he levied his sentence. Mr. Barton said that he understood his client had “not done himself any favors” as a result of his probation report.

Magistrate Foldats said there have been several cases involving smuggling drugs into Northward in his courtroom, but this was the first time he had heard a case where the alleged smuggler was a prisoner.

“The facts in this case are simple but serious,” Magistrate Foldats said. “This has been more than a simple scheme. There was substantial planning that went into it.”

The magistrate concluded that three years was the appropriate starting point for the new sentence, and he said that there were no mitigating factors involved. Mr. Parchment was levied two years for aggravating factors, but he was also given a full one-third discount for making an early guilty plea.

That brought the sentence to 40 months, but Mr. Parchment had also triggered a six-month suspended sentence from an earlier offense. The magistrate trimmed the final sentence from 46 months to 30 months after considering that Mr. Parchment still had five years to go on his firearms charge.

If you value our service, if you have turned to us in the past few days or weeks for verified, factual updates, if you have watched our live streaming of press conferences or sent an article to a friend... please consider a donation. Quality local journalism was at risk before the coronavirus crisis. It is now deeply threatened. Even a small amount can go a long way to sustaining our mission of informing the public. We need our readers’ financial support now more than ever.