GEORGE TOWN: A Nigerian student was freed of a drug charge after the prosecution failed to prove that he knew that an unopened parcel contained methamphetamine (syabu).
Justice Datuk Lim Chong Fong of the High Court here acquitted Joseph Metuh Onyinye, 35, without calling for his defence.
He ruled that the prosecution had failed to establish a prima facie case against Onyinye, who was charged with trafficking 1.8kg of syabu.
The Nigerian was charged with committing the offence on Oct 31, 2014, at about 3.10pm at Miami Green Resort Condominium in Batu Ferringhi, Penang.
This was after he signed to receive a parcel containing decorative pieces which had a secret compartment containing 50 small packets of drugs.
In his decision, Lim said the prosecution had not proven possession as the parcel was still unopened and was intact at the point of arrest.
Moreover, it was not addressed to Onyinye.
“In this case, the prosecution has not proven possession because there was no evidence that he (Onyinye) had knowledge of the existence of the drugs inside the parcel that was delivered,” he said.
The Nigerian was charged with committing an offence under Section 39B(1)(a) of the Dangerous Drugs Act 1952, which is punishable under Section 39B(2) of the same Act.
It carries the mandatory death penalty upon conviction.