The Attorney General v William Cowling

CourtRoyal Court
JudgeDeputy Bailiff
Judgment Date26 January 2018
Neutral Citation[2018] JRC 22
Date26 January 2018

[2018] JRC 022




T. J. Le Cocq, Esq., Deputy Bailiff, and Jurats Ramsden and Christensen.

The Attorney General
William Cowling

M. Temple, Esq., Solicitor General appeared for the Crown.

Advocate J. C. Gollop for the Defendant.


Misuse of Drugs (Jersey) Law, 1978.

AG -v- Boschat, Coote and Cowling [2015] JRC 254

AG -v- Martin [2013] JRC 229

AG -v- De Freitas, Saville, Sutton and Cousins . [2014] JRC 158

AG -v- Sutton [2015] JRC 147

Proceeds of Crime (Jersey) Law 1999

Inferior Number Sentencing — drugs — possession — class B and class C.

Sentencing by the Inferior Number of the Royal Court, following guilty pleas to the following charges:

1 count of: Possession of a controlled drug, with intent to supply, contrary to Article 8(2) of the Misuse of Drugs (Jersey) Law 1978.(Count 1).

3 counts of: Possession of a controlled drug, with intent to supply, contrary to Article 8(1) of the Misuse of Drugs (Jersey) Law 1978.(Counts 3, 4 and 5).

Age: 27.

Plea: Guilty.

Details of Offence:

Late on the evening of 28 th September, 2017, police officers saw the defendant taking part in a suspicious exchange with another male outside a Town Hotel. When the officers indicated they wished to speak with the defendant he retreated rapidly into the hotel and disappeared up a flight of stairs. Following the defendant upstairs he was next seen re-entering the corridor from a fire escape; noticing a strong smell of cannabis on him one of the officers detained the defendant for a drug search, he was found to have a large quantity of cash in his possession then a bag containing a further quantity of cash and a wrap of tablets was found at the bottom of the fire escape stairwell, together with a single Nike trainer containing two bags of white powder. The defendant was arrested, following which hotel staff advised he had been staying there for several days. Obtaining permission to search the room the defendant had been occupying it was found to be in disarray and smell strongly of cannabis; seized from the room were a quantity of green herbal matter and two pieces of brown resin, some white powders and capsules, electronic scales, as well as a teaspoon with white powder on it, numerous pieces of torn plastic bags, a quantity of rubber bands, two more bags of cash and a matching single Nike trainer, together with a number of electronic devices. The white powder was analysed and found to be 207·31 grams of ethylphenidate; there were 3·46 grams of cannabis resin, 2·76 grams of herbal cannabis and 17 diazepam tablets. The cash seized totalled £4,468·25. During interview the defendant admitted possession of the small ‘personal’ quantities of drugs but denied any knowledge of the white powder or cash in the stair well; he strongly denied being a drug dealer. The ethylphenidate had a street value between £10,350 to £16,560. During interview for preparation of probation and psychological reports the defendant purported to have been struggling financially and ‘sofa surfing’ depicting an impoverished lifestyle devoid of comfort. Self-recorded videos and still images from his mobile telephone painted a very different picture, that of a cash-rich, hedonistic and self-indulgent life.

Details of Mitigation:

Early guilty pleas to the lesser — eventual offences guilty plea to the most serious count.

Previous Convictions:

42 convictions on 15 previous court appearances, commencing at 12 years of age. Nine of those convictions relating to drug offences, the first four of which brought the defendant before the Royal Court 10 years previously.


Count 1: 21 months' imprisonment. (from a starting point 2 years and 9 months' imprisonment.

Count 3: 1 month's imprisonment, concurrent.

Count 4: 1 month's imprisonment, concurrent.

Count 5 2 weeks' imprisonment, concurrent.

Total: 21 months' imprisonment.

Confiscation Order sought in the sum of £4,468.25.

Forfeiture and destruction of the drugs sought.

Sentence and Observations of Court:

Count 1: Starting point of 30 months' imprisonment....

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