HKSAR v. CHU SZE MAN

DCCC 416/2013

IN THE DISTRICT COURT OF THE

HONG KONG SPECIAL ADMINISTRATIVE REGION

CRIMINAL CASE NO 416 of 2013

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HKSAR
v
Chu Sze-man

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Before: HH Judge S D’Almada Remedios

Date: 19 June 2013 at 10.07 am

Present: Miss Sheroy Tam, SPP of the Department of Justice, for HKSAR
Mr Wong Tsz-ho, of Christine M Koo & Ip, assigned by the Director of Legal Aid, for the defendant

Offence: Trafficking in a dangerous drug (販運危險藥物)

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Reasons for Sentence

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1. Defendant, you have pleaded guilty to a charge of trafficking in a dangerous drug, contrary to section 4(l)(a) and (3) of the Dangerous Drugs Ordinance.

2. You have admitted that on 3 February 2013, at the lift lobby of the 4th Floor, Tin Ming House, Tin Ping Estate, Sheung Shui, youunlawfully trafficked in 4.61 grammes of a crystalline solid containing 4.4 grammes of methamphetamine hydrochloride.

3. At about 10 past midnight that day, police officers saw you walking towards the lift lobby on the 4th Floor. As you kept lookingaround and acting suspiciously, they intercepted you.

4. Upon search of a paper bag you carried were two mobile phones, an electronic scale, a plastic straw and 20 resealable plastic bags,cash of $1,000 and a cigarette box containing 16 transparent resealable plastic bags containing the drugs.

5. The street value of the “Ice” involved in the present case was $3,141.60.

6. Your solicitor, Mr Wong Tsz-ho, has mitigated fully and thoroughly on your behalf on the last occasion and today.

7. You are 17 years of age, have an otherwise clear record save for a superintendent’s discretion on 9 March 2010 for shop theft.

8. Prior to sentencing you, I called for a training centre report. The report does not consider you suitable for detention in a trainingcentre as the medical officer is of the opinion that you are a drug dependent.

9. It is clear that at least since late 2010 you began taking drugs regularly, first, ketamine, then moved on to “Ice” which youregularly took four to five times a week until your last dosage in February 2013.

10. You were very frank in the report telling the officer how you became involved in trafficking. It appears to me that as a resultof you not having any gainful employment and experiencing quick money and large sums of money from trafficking, you began to traffickin dangerous drugs.

11. As you now know and are aware, trafficking in dangerous drugs is a very serious offence. It calls for a sentence of an immediateimprisonment. You must also have been aware that any time you can earn quick money must mean that there may be something illegal.

12. Your solicitor, Mr Wong, mitigated on the last occasion that your case falls within the tariff of 3 to 7 years’ imprisonment inthe guidelines set down by Ching Kwok Hung. These guidelines are not a straitjacket. However, youth is also not a mitigating factor.

13. I bear in mind the tariff as set out in Ching Kwok Hung. You had been trafficking in 4.4 grammes of “Ice”. Had I convicted you after trial, I would have taken a starting point of4 years’ imprisonment. However, you have pleaded guilty, shown the court your remorse after giving you the usual one third discountthat sentence shall be reduced to one of 2 years and 8 months’ imprisonment to which you shall be so sentenced.

(S. D’Almada Remedios)
District Judge