‘Mid-level drug dealer’ sent to jail

The Guardian (Charlottetown) - - PROVINCE - BY DOUG GAL­LANT THE GUARDIAN dgal­lant@the­guardian.pe.ca

A 23-year-old Char­lot­te­town man was sen­tenced in provin­cial court to serve 16 months in the provin­cial correctional cen­tre for his in­volve­ment in drug traf­fick­ing.

Stephen Robert John MacDonald was charged af­ter he sold cannabis to an agent of the po­lice.

Upon release from cus­tody, MacDonald will be placed on pro­ba­tion for two years.

Chief Provin­cial Court Judge Nancy Orr also or­dered the ac­cused to ei­ther seek em­ploy­ment or fur­ther his ed­u­ca­tion.

He is to re­frain from as­so­ci­at­ing with any­one his pro­ba­tion of­fi­cer tells him to have no con­tact with.

MacDonald was one of sev­eral peo­ple charged with drug-re­lated of­fences as a re­sult of Project Lunge, a joint fed­eral drug in­ves­ti­ga­tion be­tween the RCMP fed­eral in­ves­ti­ga­tions unit and Strat­ford RCMP and the RCMP in New Brunswick.

Project Lunge tar­geted il­licit drug net­works that were trans­port­ing and dis­tribut­ing il­le­gal drugs and con­trolled sub­stances such as pow­der and crack co­caine, hy­dro­mor­phone and cannabis.

The Crown had called for a sen­tence in the range of 12 to 18 months for MacDonald, whom po­lice de­scribed as a mid-level drug dealer.

Crown Coun­sel ref­er­enced a de­ci­sion of Supreme Court Jus­tice Ben­jamin Tay­lor in which Tay­lor de­scribed those who en­gage in the sale of il­le­gal drugs as be­ing among the worst of­fend­ers in so­ci­ety.

In pass­ing sen­tence Orr noted that there are very few days when the courts of P.E.I. do not see the im­pact the sale of il­le­gal drugs has on the com­mu­nity.

Orr said text mes­sages and au­dio record­ings pro­vided to the court showed MacDonald’s level of in­volve­ment in the drug trade and what his in­ten­tions were with re­gards to the fu­ture sale of drugs.

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