NASSAU, BAHAMAS — Director of Public Prosecutions said yesterday his office was reviewing the case of Abaco resident Pericles Anthony Maillis, who was fined after pleading guilty to multiple counts of illegal gun possession, drug possession and cultivation with intent to supply.
When contacted about the prospects on appeal of the decision, Gaskin said: “We are aware of the matter and we are now reviewing it and obviously based on the review, we will proceed appropriately.
He added: “We will draw our conclusion in short order.”
According to authorities, Maillis pleaded guilty to drug cultivation, possession of unlicensed firearms, possession of ammunition, and possession of drugs with intent to supply.
Despite pleading guilty to the range of charges, Maillis avoided a custodial sentence and was fine $15,500.
He appeared before Magistrate Ancella Evans.
Police notified media outlets on the outcome of Maillis’ matter.
The mitigating factors the magistrate may have considered if any were not made known.
According to authorities, Maillis was charged in connection with the discovery of marijuana plants in Abaco.
He was fined $3,000 for each of the two charges.
He was fined $1,000 for possession of an unlicensed rifle.
He was fined another $2,000 for possession of an unlicensed .38 revolver, $1,000 for possession of an unlicensed rifle and $1,500 for possession of an unlicensed shotgun.
He was fined an additional $3,000 for possession of ammunition with intent to supply and $1,000 for possession.
Failure to pay the fine would result in one year in prison.
It remains to be seen whether the prosecution will appeal the sentence.
The non-custodial sentence of the Abaco resident prompted social media debate about privilege in The Bahamas.
While some suggested the sentence for the crime was a “slap on the wrist”, others said there was not enough information to make any determinations on the outcome of the matter.
Clayton Phillips, a student at International Business Management Institute, said: “This is a disgrace. This country is so terrible. Foreigners and people of a lighter hew are always treated differently. A Panamanian just got five months for kilos of cocaine. People that rape and pillage our waters get small fines. If this was a local black man, he would have gotten years. The Bahamas is not for Bahamians.”
Pastor Kennedy Sarone of the Abaco Christian Council told Eyewitness News while he was aware of individuals receiving prison sentences for similar offenses, he did not know enough about the case or Maillis’ history, including any mitigating factors, to make any determinations about the outcome of the matter.
“I don’t know what the particulars are, and what the limitations or what the extent was, or what the judge had to work with to be to say if it was a good sentence or not,” he said.
“I cannot go on an idea of comparing someone else’s case to his if there is no correlation; the facts don’t correlate.
“It would not be wise.”