By LAMECH JOHNSON
Tribune Staff Reporter
THE Court of Appeal yesterday dismissed the appeals of two men who contested their conviction and sentence for their involvement in a $6m drug smuggling operation.
Stephen “Die” Stubbs and Dion Minnis’ argument of the constitutionality of wiretapped evidence was rejected as the appellate court affirmed the London-based Privy Council’s ruling in the case of Melvin Maycock Sr, which upheld the legality of the Listening Devices Act.
“The appellants contention, then, that the admissibility of the same was a breach of the hearsay rules must therefore fail,” the court’s written ruling said.
Stubbs and Minnis’ 36-month sentence for conspiracy to import and possess dangerous drugs with intent to supply was upheld.
The two men were convicted of the drug plot in Magistrates Court in August 2012 along with 58-year-old Selva Hudson of Sisal Avenue.
They were accused of conspiring with 51-year-old David Arlington Colebrooke between September 5-30, 2009, to import and possess dangerous drugs in Williams Town, Exuma, with intent to supply.
Evidence revealed the 3,935 pounds of marijuana came from Jamaica. The drugs were dropped off in Williams Town.
Hudson was arrested in the area after police found a global positioning system (GPS), which allegedly had been left in a car by Colebrooke after he got off the boat.
The police examined the tracking system that led them to the drugs — $5,902,000 worth of marijuana.
Stubbs, Hudson and Minnis had denied guilt and testified that they had no involvement in any drug smuggling operation.
However, the magistrate told both Stubbs and Minnis that based on the evidence of the prosecution, which she accepted, she believed them to be major players in the operation.
Colebrooke was on the run at the time of trial and was still missing when a verdict was handed down to his co-accused.
Justices Blackman, Stanley John and Abdulai Conteh presided over the substantive appeal hearing, but Justices John, Conteh and Neville Adderley delivered yesterday’s judgment.
Murrio Ducille represented Stubbs and Minnis. Neil Braithwaite was the Crown’s respondent on the appeal.