Second drug smuggling offense means life imprisonment - KUAM.com-KUAM News: On Air. Online. On Demand.

Second drug smuggling offense means life imprisonment

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by Krystal Paco

Guam - Drug importers, beware: island leaders are sending an even stronger message to those looking to smuggle in illegal substances.

If you're caught smuggling drugs, expect to face 20 to 30 years behind bars. If you're caught a second time, expect life imprisonment without parole. This is the message on newly posted warning signs throughout the a.b. Won pat airport authority.

"I hope this sends a strong message to the drug importers of our island. If they're not going to be productive and they're going to import these substances then we're going to take a tough stance and put them in jail for the rest of their life," said Senator Brant McCreadie.

All this follows the passage of Bill 298 into law this afternoon. Better known as The Methamaphetamine Incarceration Reform Act of 2014, bill author McCreadie says increased penalties will give the people of Guam a fighting chance in the war on drugs. "We've increased 500% in the past two years with meth and I think we at the legislature should take some burden of that and take some responsibility and we should do more to stop it," he said

"We were tough on this bill and it passed unanimously through the senate and we're here today to sign it," he said.

Also in support of increased sentences, Customs and Quarantine director Pedro Leon Guerrero said, "These laws now, they have a lot of teeth and if you do the crime you will do the time."

Senators Tony Ada and Tommy Morrison co-sponsored the legislation. Ada notes that although the 32nd Guam Legislature lacks a public safety committee, efforts to stay tough on crime haven't relinquished, saying, "In this past year, we've introduced carjacking that makes it stiffer penalties, home invasion, castle doctrine, concealed carry and now with the MIRA 2014 act we're going to start getting tough and we're going to remain tough on those who violate our homes and those who violate our families and those who violate the trust of the people by trying to bring in and importing drugs."

Also passed into law today was Bill 282, also known as The Safer Schools Act of 2014, which seeks to deter crime to school campuses.

Those caught vandalizing or burglarizing school grounds will face 10 to 20 years behind bars.
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