BVI News

Two of 3 Venezuelans fined, given 7-year sentences for drugs, gun

Two of three Venezuelan men charged for cocaine and firearm-related offences, respectively, were both fined and given seven-year prison sentences in the Magistrate’s Court.

The trio of Franklin Garcia-Ramirez, Pineda Moises-Gonzalez, and Luis Hector-Gonzalez were all sentenced during a virtual court hearing before Magistrate Christilyn Benjamin on Monday.

The total offences for which the men were respectively charged include possession of 124.36 kilos of cocaine, possession of the drugs with the intent to supply, and possession of an illegal nine-millimetre handgun. They were also individually charged with illegal entry into the territory. 

Garcia-Ramirez, who pleaded guilty to the firearm offence, was given a seven-year sentence. He was also fined $10,000 and will spend an additional five months in prison in default of not paying.

Garcia-Ramirez was also sentenced to six months in prison for illegal entry. All of his sentences will run concurrently, which means he will only serve seven years in prison.

Two seven-year sentences for drug charges

Moises-Gonzalez, who had previously pleaded guilty to ‘possession of a controlled drug’ and ‘possession of the drug with the intent to supply’, was sentenced to seven years for each charge. He was also slapped with a $100,000 fine for possession with the intent to supply. The offender was further ordered to serve a six-month prison sentence for illegal entry.

Moises-Gonzalez will only serve seven years in prison as his custodial sentences will run concurrently. But, if he fails to pay the $100,000 fine, he will spend an additional year in prison.

Meanwhile, the final of the three men, Hector-Gonzalez, received a lesser prison sentence in comparison to his counterparts, as he had only pleaded guilty to illegal entry into the BVI. He was, therefore, sentenced to five months in prison.


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