A man in his thirties from the United Kingdom, despite the large amounts of drugs he ordered from the dark web, was sentenced to probation. The fact that he voluntarily participated in a drug recovery program and had an almost clean past served a mitigating factor.
Jake Brown, 33, of Leamington Spa, Warwickshire, the United Kingdom, allegedly ordered over £7,000 ($9,100) worth of marijuana from Canada, which he tried to get shipped to his home address in the UK. According to the court records, the defendant used the dark web to purchase the illicit products. The vendor disguised the parcel as toys, however, it did not fool the customs officers.
Police officers stated the herbal cannabis Brown ordered from the dark web had a street value of £7 ($9.1) a gram. The exact amount of marijuana the package contained was 727 grams. According to prosecutor Alexandra Kettle-Williams, customs officers intercepted the parcel in September, last year, which was labeled to contain a toy set for kids. When law enforcement authorities arrested Brown later, the officers found 50 grams of marijuana in his home. At the time, the defendant told the police the drug was for his own use.
Later on, Brown admitted that he sold a portion of the drug to his friends in addition to pleading guilty to evading the prohibition on the importation of cannabis and possessing a quantity of the drug at the Warwick Crown Court.
Tom Schofield, defending Brown, stated that his client had no relevant history of convictions.
“He seems to have had a significant cannabis abuse habit, but he has voluntarily referred himself to the Recovery Partnership and has been clear of cannabis now for four months,” he said.
Mr. Schofield emphasized that Brown has a stable job as a plasterer and has a seven-month old child. The attorney stated that even the father is separated from the mother of the child, he actively contributes to the family making him a “responsible father”.
Judge Stephen Eyre QC sentenced Brown to 10 months in prison, which is suspended for two years. The defendant also has to do 250 hours of non-profit work along with complying with a 7 pm to 6 am curfew for three months.
“I have to sentence you for the importation of cannabis you obtained using the dark web. You used it yourself and you sold it to your friends,” the judge told Brown.
Judge Eyre added that there was a suspicion of reselling since investigators had found scales and bags at the home of the defendant, which points to drug dealing activity. The judge said that the 33-year-old only had previous convictions for “driving with excess alcohol and associated matters”. Judge Eyre appreciated the fact that the defendant had acted as a responsible father and had a good work record. Because of this and since Brown voluntarily participated in a drug recovery program, Judge Eyre issued a suspended sentence on the man. However, the judge added that the defendant was only separated from the jail “by the skin of the teeth”.
“I am reserving to myself any breaches of this order. You will go to prison if you’re back in front of me because I will know you have thrown this chance back in my face,” Judge Eyre warned Brown.