Prison visitor with cannabis avoids jail

9 January 2011, 09:30 | Updated: 9 January 2011, 10:28

A prison visitor found with two wraps of cannabis in his pants escaped jail on Friday.

John Buckley claimed he forget the drugs were in his boxer shorts after being caught by a sniffer dog at The Mount Jail in Bovingdon.

St Albans crown court heard the 24 year old said he had smoked cannabis earlier that day and that had affected his memory, meaning that he had forgotten to leave the drugs outside while visiting a friend in the prison.

He pleaded guilty to conveying a List A article into prison on January 24 last year.

Prosecutor Sarah Porter said: "He had secreted two lumps of cannabis resin, wrapped in cling film about his person totalling 6.7 grams.

"He admitted to police to buying it before. He said he then went to a friend's house and then his mother's where he intended to leave the drugs."

Buckley, of Dorville Crescent, Hammersmith, West London has 17 previous convictions for 33 offences.

Mark Himsworth, defending said: "The peculiar circumstances in this case are there is no intent to supply. It was by dint of a failure of his memory rather than any intent."

Judge John Plumstead passed a four-month prison sentence, suspended for two years, taking into account time Buckley spent on a curfew.  He must also carry out ten sessions of an engaging change programme.
The judge said: "Taking drugs into prison has one consequence - to fuel the drug habit of people locked up. But I accept that was not your purpose and it was for your own use. I think there are signs you have grown up and decided to try and live an honest man's life.

"For those reasons I am prepared to pass a sentence today to allow you to leave this court."