Man acquitted of drug trafficking charges

Legal: Thimphu dzongkhag court’s bench II acquitted a 28-year-old man who was charged for illicit trafficking of narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances on January 19.

Office of Attorney General (OAG) charged the man for violating section 139 (2) of the Narcotic Drugs, Psychotropic Substances and Substance Abuse Act (NDPSSA) 2015.

The alleged incident happened on May 13 last year during a job fair at the Centennial Park near Changlimithang after police constables on duty alleged that the man of acting suspiciously.

The man was arrested after the daughter of a shopkeeper in the area told police that she saw the man throwing something into a trash bin. Police claimed that they discovered 136 Spasmo Proxyvon capsules wrapped in a uniqlo jacket cover from the bin later.

Police then forwarded the case to OAG, charging the man with a third degree felony, which can result in a s sentence of between five years to nine years prison term.

According to the verdict, the prosecutor could not prove the charges against the man beyond reasonable doubt.

The verdict stated that police could not provide adequate evidence to prove before the court that the man had thrown those controlled substances. “Police on duty had verbally informed the court that they found Spasmo Proxyvon capsules but could not prove it.”

It also stated that the three police constables on duty failed to provide witnesses, as there were many youths at the time of the incident. “During cross-examination, the cover of the jacket in which the drugs were wrapped and the colour of the jacket, which the accused was wearing also didn’t match,” the verdict stated.

The verdict also stated the court couldn’t take into consideration the constables’ statements, in which they submitted that they had seized the drugs from the victim.

It is also stated that the urine test conducted by police after the arrest of the man displayed positive for using marijuana but not Spasmo Proxyvon.

The verdict, however, stated that the accused will be charged with a felony if he is found using drugs in the future.

The man, in his statement to the court during the hearing, denied the charges of the illicit trafficking of substances. He submitted that the informer should be liable for suspecting and accusing him of drug trafficking

The drugs found in the bin were handed over to the prosecutor for disposal.

OAG has ten days to appeal to the High Court if they are not satisfied with the court’s verdict.

Tashi Tenzin

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