Two Arrested for Growing Cannabis Plants in Fgura

Two people have been charged with cultivating cannabis plants that were not for their personal use, after the police raided a residence in Fgura and found 12 plants, as well as other items related to drug trafficking. The accused are a 40-year-old man from Cospicua and a 24-year-old woman from Fgura, who were arraigned before Magistrate Monica Vella on Friday evening.

The police operation was the result of investigations that had been carried out for several weeks, according to the prosecution. The police searched a residence in Triq San Tumas in Fgura, where they discovered 12 cannabis plants, as well as several glass jars filled with sachets containing a substance suspected to be cannabis. The police also found weighing scales, empty sachets, and other items that indicated drug trafficking.

The police also searched the man’s farm, located in Triq Wied il-Għajn, Żejtun, where they found five more cannabis plants. The woman was also found in possession of a bag with a substance suspected to be cocaine.

The police arrested the two suspects at the back of the premises, and took them to the police headquarters for further questioning.

The Charges and the Pleas

The two accused were charged with aggravated possession of cannabis, which means that they had more than four plants, which is the legal limit for personal use. The woman was also charged with cannabis trafficking, while the man was charged with breaching the conditions of his release from arrest on another case.

The accused pleaded not guilty to all the charges, and requested bail. However, the prosecution objected, citing the gravity of the crimes and the lack of trustworthiness of the accused. The prosecution also said that minors had been present in the residence in some instances, and that the man had a criminal record.

The defence lawyers argued that the two accused had children who depended on them, and that they had cooperated with the police. They also challenged the validity of the arrest, and asked for details about the rights of their clients.

The court, however, validated the arrest, and denied bail to the man, while granting bail to the woman, against a deposit of €2,000 and a personal guarantee of €10,000. The court also imposed several conditions on the woman, such as signing the bail book daily, observing a curfew, and not leaving the island.

The Reactions and the Implications

The case has sparked reactions and implications from various quarters, such as:

  • The public, who have expressed their opinions and views on the case, and on the issue of cannabis legalization and regulation, which has been a topic of debate and controversy in Malta for several years. Some have supported the police and the court, while others have criticized the law and the punishment.
  • The authorities, who have reiterated their commitment and efforts to combat drug trafficking and abuse, and to protect the public health and safety. They have also highlighted the challenges and the risks posed by cannabis cultivation and consumption, especially among minors and vulnerable groups.
  • The activists, who have advocated for the reform and the liberalization of the cannabis law, and for the recognition and the respect of the rights and the choices of cannabis users. They have also called for the decriminalization and the regulation of cannabis, and for the promotion of education and awareness on the substance.

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