His Majesty par­dons 45 pris­on­ers con­victed un­der To­bacco Act

Bhutan Times - - Front Page - Staff Re­porter

His Majesty the King last Fri­day granted Royal par­don to 45 pris­on­ers con­victed un­der the To­bacco Con­trol Act, 2010 and the To­bacco Con­trol (Amend­ment) Act, 2012, giv­ing them the ben­e­fit of the To­bacco Con­trol (Amend­ment) Act, 2014.

The Royal par­don was granted to those pris­on­ers who were not re­peat of­fend­ers and didn’t have ad­verse prison records.

Un­der the ear­lier To­bacco Con­trol Acts, sale and dis­tri­bu­tion of or the pos­ses­sion of to­bacco or to­bacco prod­ucts, with­out proof of pay­ment of tax and duty or beyond the per­mis­si­ble limit, were charged un­der the fourth de­gree felony with the sen­tence term rang­ing from three years to less than five years.

Un­der the To­bacco Con­trol (Amend­ment) Act, 2014 the sen­tences for the same of­fences is re­duced to mis­de­meanor or petty mis­de­meanor along with fines equiv­a­lent to five times the value of the to­bacco prod­ucts.

As the laws are not ap­plied with ret­ro­spec­tive ef­fect for of­fend­ers who were al­ready con­victed, th­ese pris­on­ers would have to serve their en­tire sen­tences if it had not been for His Majesty’s in­ter­ven­tion through the Kidu sys­tem.

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