HKSAR v. WONG MAN HO

DCCC 666/2010

IN THE DISTRICT COURT OF THE

HONG KONG SPECIAL ADMINISTRATIVE REGION

CRIMINAL CASE NO. 666 OF 2010

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HKSAR
v.
Wong Man Ho

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Before:

H.H. Judge E. Yip

Date:

11th August 2010 at 9: 35 a.m.

Present:

Mr. Andrew LI, Public Prosecutor, of the Department of Justice, for HKSAR
Mr. LIU Wah Tak Walter, of M/s. Walter Liu & Co. assigned by DLA 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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Charge and facts

1. The defendant pleads guilty to trafficking in a dangerous drug, namely 18.16 grammes of a powder containing 13.75 grammes of ketamine.At about 11:15 p.m. on 22 April 2010, the defendant was walking back and forth outside the public toilet of the On Luk Street Park,Ma On Shan. The police found him suspicious and searched his body. It contained ketamine. Upon caution, he said he helped to deliverthe ketamine from Tsuen Wan to Ma On Shan for a reward of $300.

Personal background and mitigation

2. The defendant was 15 years of age at the time of the offence and is now 16. He was educated up to F. 1 level. He has 6 previousrecords which are all unrelated to drugs. He was released from the Rehabilitation Centre in November 2009. He was about to completea building service course in IVE when he was expelled for persistent lateness for classes. He started to take a few treats of ketaminefrom friends since December 2009. He committed the present offence to sustain his drug habit. His parents are diabetics and dependon public assistance. Although living under the same roof, he has little communications with them.

3. According to the assessment officer of the Correctional Services, he has no insight toward his past misdeeds or any plan about hisfuture. A period of disciplinary training coupled with statutory supervision will be beneficial to him. He is mentally and physicallyfit for detention in a Training Centre. There is a place available for him.

Sentencing guidelines for ketamine trafficking

4. The Court of Appeal in Secretary for Justice v Hii Siew Cheng [2009] 1 HKLRD 1 had laid down sentencing guidelines for trafficking in ketamine as follows:

(1 up to 1 gramme – within the sentencer’s discretion;

(2) over 1 gramme to 10 grammes – 2 to 4 years’ imprisonment;

(3) 10 to 50 grammes – 4 to 6 years’ imprisonment;

(4) 50 to 300 grammes – 6 to 9 years’ imprisonment;

(5) 300 to 600 grammes – 9 to 12 years’ imprisonment;

(6) 600 to 1000 grammes – 12 to 14 years’ imprisonment; and

(7) over 1000 grammes – 14 years upwards.

Sentencing this Defendant

5. I have to consider which is more suitable, prison or the Training Centre. For a prison term, the starting point shall be not lessthan 4 years. The Defendant was a courier for reward. The foremost mitigation is his plea of guilty. Next is his relatively youngage. The eventual sentence is unlikely to be less than 2 years. A Training Centre detention shall be from 6 months (unless the ChiefExecutive directs for a shorter detention) to 3 years. The duration shall depend on his conduct. There is 3 years’ supervisionafter release.

6. I am satisfied that in the interest of the community and that having regard to his character and previous conduct and to the circumstancesof the offence, it is expedient for his reformation and for the prevention of crime that he should undergo a period of training ina training centre. I make this order accordingly.

( E. Yip )
District Judge