Tulisa Contostavlos charged with supplying Class A drugs

Tulisa Contostavlos charged with supplying Class A drugs

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Taken from the ITV website
Taken from the ITV website

On 9 December 2013, the CPS announced that the singer and former X-Factor judge Tulisa had been charged with being concerned in the supply of Class A drugs.

The CPS press statement stated:

“The Crown Prosecution Service has today authorised the Metropolitan Police Service to charge Tulisa Contostavlos, 25, with being concerned in the supply of Class A drugs.

“This charge relates to an investigation by The Sun newspaper between early March 2013 and 23 May 2013 which resulted in the supply of Class A drugs to an investigative journalist.

“This decision to prosecute was taken in accordance with the Code for Crown Prosecutors. We have determined that there is sufficient evidence for a realistic prospect of conviction and that a prosecution is in the public interest.

“Ms Contostavlos will appear before Westminster Magistrates’ Court on 19 December 2013.

“This defendant is now the subject of criminal proceedings and has the right to a fair trial. It is extremely important that nothing should be reported which could in any way prejudice these proceedings.”

The offence

Supply is an offence under Misuse of Drugs Act 1971 s 4(3):

(1) Subject to any regulations under section 7 of this Act [, or any provision made in a temporary class drug order by virtue of section 7A,] 1 for the time being in force, it shall not be lawful for a person—

(a) to produce a controlled drug; or

(b) to supply or offer to supply a controlled drug to another.

(3) Subject to section 28 of this Act, it is an offence for a person—

(a) to supply or offer to supply a controlled drug to another in contravention of subsection (1) above; or

(b) to be concerned in the supplying of such a drug to another in contravention of that subsection; or

(c) to be concerned in the making to another in contravention of that subsection of an offer to supply such a drug.

The maximum sentence is life imprisonment and the offence is capable of being tried either in the Magistrates Court (maximum sentence 6 months) or the Crown Court (maximum life).

Sentencing

The following is purely for information and is not connected to the allegation made against Tulisa. Currently there has been no statement made by her representatives and she is of course innocent until proven guilty.

Courts sentencing for drug offences must have regard to the Sentencing Council’s Definitive guideline on drug offences (see the ‘Supply’ section).

The court must determine the role the offender played in the supplu and the category the offence fits into (based on indicative weight of the drug supplied). As an example of the type of sentence imposed for a very simple supply offence the starting point for supplying 5g of cocaine, in a lesser role is 18 months custody.

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