COURT: Defendant, you appear before this court today for sentence, having pleaded guilty in the court below to a charge of traffickingin a dangerous drug, contrary to section 4(1)(a) and (3) of the Dangerous Drugs Ordinance, Cap. 134, Laws of Hong Kong, the particulars being that you, on 19 April of last year at Hong Kong International Airport, unlawfullytrafficked in 3.56 kilograms of a solid containing 2.29 kilograms of cocaine.
The Summary of Facts which you have today confirmed are simple and establish that on the date and at the time and place mentionedin the charge, you were intercepted at Customs Clearance at the Arrivals Hall of the airport. You were searched, and from a secretcompartment of your travel bag, three slabs of cocaine, being the drugs which are the subject matter of the charge, were found.
You subsequently admitted that you brought the drugs into Hong Kong from Doha for a US$10,000 reward as you were in financial difficultiesat the time.
The drugs in this case have a retail value of over HK$4 million.
You are 47 years of age, a Colombian national, who succumbed to the temptation of bringing these drugs into Hong Kong for financialreward.
The reality of this is that there really is no mitigation whatsoever in this case save for your plea of guilty, which is an indicationof your remorse, and for which I will give you full credit.
I take into account all that has been said on your behalf by way of mitigation, including the fact that you are a man of hithertogood character.
The case of HKSAR v Abdallah Anwar Abbas CACC304/2008 contained guidelines for sentencing with regard to trafficking in large quantities of heroin or cocaine, and for traffickingin between 1,200 grammes to 4,000 grammes, the starting point for sentencing after trial indicates a sentence of between 23 to 26years’ imprisonment.
In this case, the court is dealing with 2.29 kilograms of narcotic. Accordingly, I adopt a starting point of 24 years’ imprisonment.
There is, of course, an international element to this, as you brought these drugs into Hong Kong from overseas. I will therefore enhancethe starting point by 2 years to a sentence of 26 years’ imprisonment.
To reflect your plea of guilty to this offence, I afford you the full one‑third discount, arriving at a sentence of 17 years and4 months’ imprisonment.