Charge of supply of psychoactive substance dismissed
Nottingham crime and duty solicitor Jameel Malik represented a client who had been arrested of intentionally supplying a psychoactive substance into prison. The recipient of the drugs was said to be her son in HMP Nottingham.
Supply of a psychoactive substance?
Following a prison visit from his mother, our client’s son had been randomly selected for a search. He was wearing two pairs of boxer shorts and was in possession of green vegetable matter.
Once forensically examined, this was found to be a psychoactive substance with a weight of 103g. The value of the substance if sold in prison by the gram was a little over £10 000.
Free and independent legal advice in police interview
Jameel had first met his client in the police station when she had requested the free and independent legal advice of the duty solicitor. She had given an account to the police in interview denying passing her son the psychoactive substance. She did accept that she might have passed him a note or a bar of chocolate.
CCTV footage of the prison visit was produced by the police in interview. This showed his client and her partner in the visiting hall. Both sat down at the table with our client’s son. The CCTV footage clearly showed Jameel’s client pass something to her son who then placed two packages in his boxer shorts.
Proceedings at Nottingham Magistrates’ Court
Our client was charged with supplying a psychoactive substance. The issue for trial was whether she had passed her son the substance during the visit.
Jameel provided advice about whether the case ought to remain in the Magistrates’ Court or be allocated to the Crown Court. He successfully argued that trial could be dealt with before the Magistrates’ Court.
The matter proceeded to trial. The CCTV footage was played. Agreed evidence was read as to how the prison officers had retrieved the psychoactive substance. The expert report proving the nature of the substance was also read, as were procedural issues relating to visitor searches. Finally, our client’s interview with her denials were read out.
Submission of no case to answer
Having considered the evidence, Jameel then decided that it was appropriate to make a submission that there was insufficient evidence to allow the case to proceed.
He argued that even taking the prosecution case at its highest there was simply insufficient evidence to show that it was his client who had supplied the substance to her son.
He highlighted the following:
- the amount of the substance was of significant size. This was not discovered upon his client’s entry into the prison
- the CCTV footage did not show what was passed
- his search was actually two hours after the visit rather than immediately after the visit had taken place
- there was a significant opportunity for the substance to have been acquired at another time during the morning.
The Magistrates retired to consider the submission. Upon their return they stated that they did not believe that the prosecution had sufficient evidence to provide a case for Jameel’s client to answer. The case was dismissed.
Instruct a criminal solicitor in Nottingham
If you are investigated for an offence then you will want to instruct a firm of solicitors that will try and provide you with continuity of representation between your initial arrest and final disposal in the Magistrates’ court.
We will try to make sure that you keep the same solicitor throughout your case to avoid you seeing a number of new faces and having to explain your account on more than one occasion.
Don’t forget that our independent advice and representation in the police station will always be free of charge, and you may be entitled to free Magistrates’ Court representation under our legal aid contracts.
If you want to instruct Jameel in a case then please call him on 0115 9599550 or use the contact form below.