Two West End women allegedly caught with roughly $20,000 cash and more than 700 grams of cannabis this month were each granted $100,000 bail when they appeared before Magistrate Shawn Innocent on Tuesday.
Charged with possession of cannabis and possession of a controlled drug with intent to supply are 39-year-old Belonger Caroline Hodge-Clarke and her 22-year-old local partner, DJanne Varlack.
The accused duo have not been officially charged with any offence relating to the large quantity of cash that law enforcers recovered at their shared residence.
Acting on a tip, police intercepted the accused female duo who were driving in the Hannah’s Estate area of Tortola on December 7, the court heard.
Hodge-Clarke was the driver while Varlack was a passenger in the vehicle, the court heard.
At the time, nothing illegal was found on Hodge-Clarke but a search of Varlack allegedly uncovered a transparent plastic bag containing eight grams of cannabis.
After being cautioned, she allegedly said: “Officer it’s weed, it’s mine.”
The court heard that a subsequent search of the vehicle allegedly uncovered another three grams of the drug. Hodge-Clarke reportedly accepted ownership of the controlled substance.
More cannabis was allegedly found inside a red Kipling bag on the floor of the front passenger seat.
That quantity amounted to 741 grams and had a street value of $7,410, the court heard. When questioned, Hodge-Clarke allegedly said the bag belonged to Varlack but she found the drugs and secured it in the said bag.
Police also recovered $163 cash from Hodge-Clarke, the court heard. They were arrested and charged.
One day later, police executed a search warrant at the women’s Belmont Estate home in West End.
There, police allegedly uncovered approximately $20,000 cash in a single bag behind a mirror in the bedroom of the house.
When questioned, Hodge-Clarke reportedly told police: “That’s my life savings.”
The court heard that Varlack added: “Officer, we worked hard for that money doing all kinds of jobs.”
Police also found another four grams of cannabis which Hodge-Clark allegedly claimed as her own.
The drugs and the money were confiscated for investigation purposes.
While granting bail to the accused women in court on Tuesday, Magistrate Innocent said $10,000 of the $100,000 bail offer must be paid in cash for each of the accused persons. The remaining $90,000 will be signed by a suitable surety.
As part of their bail conditions, the duo is to submit all travel documents to the Road Town Police Station.
They are not allowed to travel beyond the territory’s shores and are to report to the Road Town Police Station every day between 6 am to 6 pm.
Attorney Nelson Samuel represents the accused women.
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