Ex-XI Men player held for dagga
MBABANE – A former XI Men in Flight player who was arrested for illegal dagga possession told the court that he came to Swaziland to pick up dagga in order to sell it in South Africa.
Said Abdullah Mponda (22), a Tanzanian national, appeared before Mbabane Magistrate Siphosini Dlamini and pleaded guilty to being found in possession of dagga.
Mponda was arrested on March 21, 2012 at Ngwenya Border Post when it was discovered that he had 1.35kg of dagga on his person without a licence permitting him to carry it.
He told Magistrate Dlamini that he had come into Swaziland on the instruction of his Johannesburg based friend who offered him a financial incentive to come into the country to pick up dagga which they would sell in South Africa.
He said he had agreed because he wanted to make money to help his sickly mother.
He also said he did not know that dagga possession was illegal in the country but apologised to the magistrate and the Swazi people. The former soccer player said he played for six months in the country and is currently unemployed.
Magistrate Dlamini warned that illegal drug possession was becoming prevalent in the country and it was a cause for concern that people came into the country with the sole purpose to look for dagga which they would re-sell in international markets.
He said he had to pass a sentence which would serve as a deterrent for Mponda and other would-be offenders to commit similar offences.
Magistrate Dlamini sentenced Mponda to two years imprisonment with a fine option of E2 000.
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