Opinion: Cocaine

POSTED: 07/29/13 1:42 PM

Smuggling cocaine is never smart, but it remains attractive because the rewards (or potential profits) are so high. While we have no definite information about the reason for the arrest of former policeman Marcel Loor in Paris, the rumors are persistent that he was caught with a kilo of cocaine in his luggage. Because this is so obviously stupid, it is also hard to believe.

The maximum sentence for smuggling drugs in France is 10 years. In the Netherlands, the highest sanction on drugs smuggling is 12 years.

You have to be quite a drugs lord to earn the highest punishment. In March of this year, the court in Philipsburg sentenced a man to 4 years imprisonment, with 1 year suspended for smuggling 54 kilos of cocaine. In 2011, three men caught with 10.3 kilos of cocaine received sentenced from 26 to 46 months. In 2010, one smuggler was sent to prison for 3 years for transporting 27 kilos, another one received 18 months for 1.7 kilos; the court suspended half of this sentence. In 2012, another cocaine mule carrying 528 grams received a 12 month prison sentence, also with half of it suspended.

Against this background, a possible sentence for smuggling 1 kilo of the white lady should result in a sentence between 12 and 18 months, with half of the sentence suspended. Obviously, this only applies if a defendant is found guilty, and if the French courts follow more or less the same line as their Dutch brethren.

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