Judge endorses house arrest

Gary
Gary Kean
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CORNER BROOK — A Nova Scotian man who had 56 pounds of marijuana in the trunk of his car when stopped by the police in western Newfoundland has been given two years, less one day, of house arrest.

Robert Edward Burke, 34, was arrested after a search of his vehicle on the Trans-Canada Highway near St. Jude’s in March 2010 uncovered the drugs.

He recently entered a guilty plea to possessing a controlled substance for the purposes of trafficking. At his sentencing hearing, Judge Wayne Gorman endorsed a joint submission from the Crown and defence that sought a conditional period of imprisonment for two years less one day.

Burke has no prior convictions, works full-time as a coil tubing operator and his job requires him to travel to Alberta often. A pre-sentence report prepared for the court indicated that Burke viewed the offence he committed as “very wrong” and that he was a student struggling financially at the time of the offence.

Gorman said, based on the pre-sentence report, Burke’s prospects for rehabilitation are realistic, there is a good chance he will not re-offend and he does not constitute a danger to the safety of the community.

“I conclude that any risk which exists can be reasonably managed through the imposition of conditions in a conditional sentence order,” Gorman said in his written decision on the case.

Organizations: Trans-Canada Highway

Geographic location: CORNER BROOK, Nova Scotian, Newfoundland Alberta

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  • Mike
    July 31, 2013 - 21:38

    Really, what is the point in spending money to enforce anti-drug laws? The courts do not treat the offence of DEALING drugs seriously. It makes little difference what the drug is. If you have 25 kilos of pot, you bought it from or for some faction of organized crime. Our prosecution services need to start taking a former stance. By making a joint submission, the crown tied the judge's hands, but that joint submission was based on a series of weak, liberal-minded decisions that do not see dealing marijuana as serious as dealing "hard" drugs without seeing the reality that dealing is dealing. But, hey, let's send the drug dealer back to his home office to serve his sentence...what a terrible train of thought...no wonder people are running drugs into this province.