TAHITI COURT SENTENCES ‘ICE’ RINGLEADER TO 5 YEARS

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PAPEÉTE, Tahiti (Tahitipresse, Feb. 15) - The Papeéte Criminal Court sentenced the confessed leader of an "ice" trafficking ring Tuesday to five years in prison, while eight others convicted of using or trafficking "ice", or crystal methamphetamine, received varying sentences.

One user received a 12-month suspended prison sentence. Eight persons were fined a collective 8.5 million French Pacific francs [US$85,600].

The sentences were heavier than what the prosecutor had requested two weeks ago for the members of the trafficking ring.

The nine persons were found guilty of illegally importing between 500 and 700 grams (17.6-24.7 ounces) of "ice" from Los Angeles, California.

The court estimated the "ice" had a street value of 19 million to 50 million French Pacific francs [US$191,000 to $503,000].

February 16, 2006

Tahitipresse: www.tahitipresse.pf

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