African teen escapes hangman’s noose
> Found guilty of drug trafficking but was underage at time of offence
GEORGE TOWN: The Penang High Court yesterday found a teenager from Malawi, Africa, guilty of trafficking in methamphetamine three years ago, but she escaped the gallows because she was underage at the time of the offence.
She was 17 years and 11 months old when she was arrested for trafficking 4.3kg of the drug at the arrival hall of the Penang International Airport on Oct 5, 2013.
Judicial Commissioner Collin Lawrence Sequerah found her guilty of the offence under Section 39B the Dangerous Drugs Act 1952, which carries the mandatory death sentence.
However, he ordered the now 19-year-old to be detained at the pleasure of the Yang diPertua Negri as allowed under Section 97(2)(b) of the Child Act 2001.
“The defence failed to raise reasonable doubt against the case presented by the prosecution,” Sequerah said in his ruling.
During mitigation, defence counsel Hussaini Abdul Rashid said the youth came from a broken home.
He urged the court to consider the age of his client, who was also represented by Anthony Chew.