NASSAU, BAHAMAS – A senior Magistrate yesterday granted an absolute discharge to an American woman who was arrested for possession of five grams of marijuana at the airport.
Zoe Marsh-Leigh, 34, was arraigned before Deputy Chief Magistrate Andrew Forbes and plead guilty to possession of dangerous drugs that had a street value of $10.
Marsh-Leigh was traveling on Delta flight #379 from Nassau to Atlanta on Tuesday.
She was flagged by US Customs and Border Protection, who turned her over – along with two marijuana cigarettes – to Bahamian authorities at the Lynden Pindling International Airport.
In court yesterday, Marsh-Leigh said she purchased the marijuana legally in the US before her trip.
She further explained that she overlooked the presence of the cigarettes in her luggage because she traveled often, adding she was also unaware marijuana was illegal in The Bahamas.
The discharge comes amid heightened political discourse over the potential reformation of laws and regulation of medicinal and recreational use of cannabis.
Last week, Prime Minister Dr Hubert Minnis expressed support for the release of all prisoners incarcerated for the possession of small amounts of marijuana.
The prime minister has also previously affirmed his support for expunging the records of Bahamians convicted of possession of small amounts of marijuana.
However, the Opposition has branded his statements a ‘publicity stunt’.