Cocaine user gets time in jail reduced

2011-03-23 00:00

A CHATSWORTH man has successfully appealed against his conviction for dealing in small amounts of cocaine in 2008 and was instead found guilty of attempting to deal in the drug, which he sold to a police trap on two occasions, but will still serve time in jail.

Acting Judge Johan Ploos van Amstel and Judge Themba Sishi ruled that the accused, Nazeer Ali Khan (42), sold what he thought was cocaine to a police officer on two separate occasions on February 26 and March 19, 2008 but they said that on the evidence before court the prosecution had failed to prove that the substance was in fact cocaine.

The judges said, however, that in his own version Khan had believed the substance he sold was cocaine and because of that found him guilty of attempted to deal in the drug.

The amounts involved were 2,08 grams and 1,57 grams.

The appeal court set aside Khan’s initial sentence, which was an effective 10 years’ imprisonment, and replaced it with a sentence of five years, half of which was suspended on each of the two counts.

Part of the term was ordered to run concurrently so that Khan will serve an effective two-and-a-half years in prison.

The appeal court took into account in that Khan had no previous convictions, that he was not a “dealer in the true sense of the word who profited from the misery of others”, but was an addict who had acted as a go-between in order to earn money to feed his own drug habit.

 

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