Sentencing Guidelines - Drug Offences

14 judgments

25 November 2022

King v Luong Bui

Application to appeal sentence – cultivation of cannabis – abstracting electricity – assisting unlawful immigration – perverting the course of justice – three cannabis factories – strategic control of substantial, sophisticated and highly profitable enterprise – whether sentence for cannabis factory counts too high – whether three year consecutive sentence on top of already stiff sentence manifestly excessive – totality – deterrent sentence of 12 years appropriate – proper global sentence 13 years – leave granted – appeal allowed – sentence perverting the course of justice reduced to 1 year consecutive to other counts – total custodial sentence 13 years

[2022] NICA 78
Fowler J, Horner LJ, Keegan LCJ
06 December 2019

Queen v Daniel Raymond Dunlop

appeal against sentence - supply of a Class A and Class B drugs (cocaine) contrary to section 4(3)(b) of the Misuse of Drugs Act 1971 - substantial criminal record of 61 previous convictions, three relate to possession of drugs (cannabis) - delay - approach adopted and weight accorded by the sentencing judge to the factor of the appellant’s rehabilitation were erroneous in law - appeal allowed

[2019] NICA72
McCloskey LJ
07 July 2015

R v Hughes, Hughes and Hughes. (DPP References 1,2,3 and 4 of 2015)

DPP reference – Possession of class A/B drugs with intent to supply – significant quantities of class A with high value – 3 defendants – determinate sentences of 5 yrs., 4 yrs., and 3 yrs. (6 custody plus 2½ on licence) – unduly lenient – substituted with 6½ yrs., 5 yrs., and 2yrs. (12 month plus 12 months) – earlier NI guidelines affirmed.

2015 NICA 53
Morgan LCJ
17 May 2013

R v Gary McKeown; DPP Ref (No 2 of 2013) and R v Han Lin

Appeal against sentence and DPP's Reference - review of authorities on supply and production of drugs - consideration of definitive guideline from England & Wales - guideline deemed useful for aggravating and mitigating factors and serious/culpability - less applicable however in this jurisdiction on starting points and ranges where flexibility required - different approach needed for very large quantities - R v. McIlwaine [1998] NICA reaffirmed in this regard.

[2013] NICA 28
Morgan LCJ
29 May 2012

R v Ming Chen

Possession of Class B drugs – intent to supply and possession of criminal property – cannabis – sentencer entitled to have regard to surrounding circumstances especially cultivation.

[2012] NICA 17
Morgan LCJ
15 April 2005

David Cyril Dawson, Jerome Campbell and Darren Martin, Attorney General's Reference (No 8 of 2004) (AG Ref 11,12 & 13 of 2004)

Reference by AG - whether sentences unduly lenient - drugs offences - Misuse of Drugs Act 1971 - importation of drugs into Northern Ireland - substantial quantity of drugs - intention of Judge to pass non-custodial sentence - failure of the prosecution to inform the judge of relevant authorities - application refused.

[2005] NICA 18
Kerr LCJ
29 September 2003

Richard Herbert Crowe - Attorney General's Reference (No 5 of 2003)

Reference by AG of sentence as unduly lenient – 3 years’ probation concurrent with earlier equivalent sentence for similar offending – possession/possession with intent to supply Class A & B drugs – unusual circumstances for ‘supply’ – offender responding well to addiction treatment on probation - sentence lenient but not unduly so.

[2003] NICA 38
Carswell LCJ
06 June 2003

R v Patrick Joseph Murdock


[2003] NICA 21
Carswell LCJ
11 March 1998

R v David Thomas McIlwaine

Possession and supply of cannabis - judicial response to growing amount of cannabis circulating in jurisdiction.

R v Mcilwaine MacDermott LJ 11.03.98
MacDermott LJ
07 February 1997

R v John Joseph Conlon

Drugs - possession and supply of cannabis - Mitigating factors - dealing on small scale - encouragement to rehabilitation of offender.

R v Conlon 70297 CarswellLCJ
Carswell LCJ
03 May 1996

R v Stalford and O'Neill

Appeal against sentence - possession with intent to supply - ecstasy - value and quantity of drugs seized - age, background and addiction of appellants.

R v Stalford and O'Neill
MacDermott LJ
15 December 1995

R v Gallagher and Mullan

Appeal against sentence - possession of ecstasy and cannabis with intent to supply - couriers.

15 December 1995MACDERMOTT LJ
MacDermott LJ
07 July 1995

R v Haveron, Millar, Harris and McCrystal

Application for leave to appeal against sentence - possession with intent to supply Class A and Class B Drugs - couriers.

7 July 1995CARSWELL LJ
Campbell LJ
04 February 1994

R v Hogg & others

Appeal against sentence - possession and supply of Class A and Class B drugs.

[1994] NI 258
Hutton LCJ