Unknowingly smuggled cannabis into prison

We report regularly on those Belizeans who dare to defy the perfect record of prison officers in sniffing out attempts to smuggle marijuana into the Central Prison at Hattieville. And while they are invariably caught and made to serve time themselves, the subject of this story avoided being sent to jail for Christmas.

24 year old Rufus Castillo says he did not know that he was smuggling 21 grams of cannabis at the bottom of a Gillette deodorant, which prison officers found in a package in a plastic bag brought by the messenger to the prison’s gates on Tuesday.

According to Rufus Castillo, his cousin’s girlfriend gave him the package to take to his cousin, an inmate of the prison.

While ultimately choosing to spare him from joining his cousin, by issuing a $500 fine to be paid by February 28, 2015, Senior Magistrate Sharon Frazer informed Mr Castillo that he should have searched the package to know exactly what he was taking to prison, and the law deems that, knowing or not, he is responsible for what was in the package.

If the fine is not paid Rufus Castillo will serve a five-month jail term.

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