PHILIPSBURG, Sint Maarten – The Court of First Instance has convicted a former prison guard of smuggling marijuana into the Pointe Blanche Prison while he was employed there.
E.C. has received a six-month suspended prison sentence with three years’ probation, 150 hours of community service, and a fine of US $600. The fine corresponds to the amount E.C. received for his smuggling activities.
The trafficking and possession of cannabis and its derivative Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) are prohibited by the Opium Ordinance and carry punishments ranging from community service to prison time as seen in the case of the now former prison guard.
A prison guard caught and convicted for breaking the laws of the country related to illicit drugs seriously undermine the trust put in prison guards. These are member of the justice chain who are charged with helping to restore lawfulness in the society.
The smuggling of drugs into the prison creates insecurity by heightening the risk for fellow prison guards as they execute their duties. The illegal activity also present pressure for others to indulge in similar behavior, undermining the prison system further.
The Prosecutor’s Office OM SXM is aware that prison guards are working under less than ideal circumstances, yet the majority attend to their duties diligently. That makes this case of smuggling even more troubling as it tarnishes the reputation of those prison guards and further impacts already sagging morale within their ranks.
Members of the justice chain should be cognizant of their role in upholding the laws of the country and not expose the system to risks. This case is an example that should not be followed.