Photo Credit: BVI Platinum News
The 2015 ‘Farmer of the Year’, Renardis Donovan walked out of the Magistrate’s Court a free man today, after the drug charges against him were dismissed for want of a proper case by the prosecution.
Back in October 2015, the Police executed a search operation on a plot of land occupied by the farmer in Carrot Bay. During that search, some 226 cannabis plants were allegedly found and uprooted.
He was subsequently placed before the court and went on trial.
Today, December 7, as the trial continued, the prosecution failed to produce the evidence—the cannabis plants—owing to the fact that the police storage room is overtaken with mold.
They instead attempted to introduce the Drug Analyst’s Certificate and photographs of the marijuana plants.
However, Donovan’s Attorney, Jamal Smith objected to this, due to the fact that there is nothing to prove the chain of custody of the drugs, and whether or not the certificate is the one for the evidence in this case.
Furthermore, the photographs of the alleged plants had no indications or markings of the location.
In upholding the objections by the defense, Magistrate Shawn Innocent stated that the, “police need to up their game” as the photographs were not properly taken to be used as evidence in a court proceeding.
He pointed out that due to the manner in which it was taken, it could have been any location as there were no markings, nor was there any to show a link to Mr. Donovan.