3 other drug cases sentenced in January

By: L.N. Reklai

(Koror, Palau) Court issued its judgment and sentence this week against former police officer and member of the Belau Drug Enforcement Taskforce Kamesak Demek.

The court issued sentences on three other drug cases filed in 2016, cases of ROP vs. Burton Tomei Solang, ROP vs. Shane Rechebong, and ROP vs. Sechedui Ito.


In the case of ROP vs. Kamesak Demek, a former police officer assigned to the Belau Drug Enforcement Taskforce, government charged him on seven counts and on February 14, he pled guilty to four counts, Tampering with Physical Evidence, Obstructing Government Operations, Misconduct in Public Office, and Possession of Controlled Substance.

Each count carries a different imprisonment terms and fines.  For Tampering with Physical Evidence, he was sentenced to one year imprisonment and $500 fine.  For Obstructing, he was also sentenced to one year and fine of $500.  For Misconduct in Public Office, he was sentenced to 18 months imprisonment and $2,500 in fines.  For Possession of Controlled Substance, he was also sentenced to 18 months  and fine $2,500.  His imprisonment sentences will run concurrently, meaning that he will serve only 18 months in jail and pay a total fine of $6,000.

In the case of ROP vs. Burton T. Solang, he was charged with four felony counts.  He pled guilty to two  counts, Trafficking of Controlled Substance and two Possession of Controlled Substance. He was sentenced to one year imprisonment with nine months suspended. His sentence mandates he enrolls in a drug counseling program and pay fine of $1,000 dollars plus restitution of $400 to BDEFT. He will actually serve 3 months in jail, undergo drug counseling and random drug testing.

In ROP vs. Shane Rechebong, Mr. Rechebong pled to one of the charges against him, also lesser charge of Possession of Controlled Substance.  He was sentenced also to one year imprisonment with nine months suspended.  He will be allowed to participate in the work release program with Ngara Ubeng during his 3 months of incarceration.  He will also pay $1,000 dollar fine and be subject to random drug testing four times a year.

Sechedui Ito who was also charged on one Trafficking and one Possession of Controlled substance, also pled guilty to lesser charge of possession and was given similar term as other in sentencing.

Thirteen drug cases were adjudicated in 2016 and four this January of 2017.  Of the 13 cases 2016, 2 were dismissed and 11 were sentenced.  All the 11 pled guilty to lesser charges. [/restrict]