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Curfew for teen held with ganja

By Nikita Braxton-Benjamin

A 14-year-old boy will spend his entire Christmas vacation indoors during the night after pleading guilty yesterday to possession of marijuana.

The second form secondary school pupil was placed on a 12-hour curfew by Magistrate Lisa Ramsumair-Hinds when he appeared before her in the San Fernando Magistrates' Court .

The court heard that at around 8 p.m on Friday, the boy was seen standing at the side of the road smoking a cigarette of unusual length.

He was arrested by constable Gerald. The marijuana weighed two grammes.

Defence attorney Cedric Neptune said his client came from a classic case of a broken home and moved to his new residence a year ago.

The child's stepfather, with whom he lived since he was a baby, stood at his side in court.

The father said the boy's mother had gone abroad for six months and was expected home soon.

He also told the court that the teenager had missed almost a year in school after there was a delay in is transfer from a north-based school.

The magistrate said she was disturbed that the boy had found himself before her on the first day of the school holiday.

"I'm concerned that as soon as school is out, your first activity for the vacation involves weed. I worry about what you are going to do for the rest of the vacation ... This is Christmas, why are you involved in things you are not supposed to be involved in?" Ramsumair-Hinds asked.

She considered sending the boy to the Youth Training Centre until his mother returns home but instead imposed a 6 p.m. to 6 a.m. curfew on him.

"I don't want you outside for the whole holidays. A curfew is absolutely important, so much comes with the darkness with young people," she said.

She adjourned the case to January 4, pending a probation officer's report.

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