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Reporters plead guilty to marijuana possession

 TWO Guardian reporters who pleaded guilty to marijuana possession before a Port of Spain magistrate yesterday were each fined and sentenced to several hours of community service.

The fines were however suspended.

The reporters, Derek Achong and Andrew Gioanetti, were arrested on Sunday just after 8.30 p.m. by a party of officers on patrol along Fitzblackman Drive, Woodbrook near the Hasely Crawford stadium.

Police said the men were in a car and when they were searched they found Achong with three grammes of marijuana and Gioanetti four.

They were then taken to the St James Police Station where they were charged.

In court yesterday they appeared before Magistrate Debbie-Ann Bassaw.

They were represented by attorney Wayne Sturge who in a plea of mitigation said both men had never been charged with anything illegal before.

Magistrate Bassaw agreed with Sturge’s submissions and fined Achong $700 while Gioanetti was fined $1,100. These fines were suspended however and instead Achong was ordered to serve 120 hours of community service while Gioanetti was ordered to serve 180 hours.

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