Bermuda Incident: Man Ingests Over 110 Grams of Hash in Avoidance Bid

In a startling turn of events on the island of Bermuda, a man resorted to swallowing over 110 grams of hashish in a bid to evade drug charges. However, law enforcement officials employed a unique strategy, waiting for the hashish to naturally pass through his body while he underwent drug tests at a nearby hospital. The incident serves as a cautionary tale for travelers considering a visit to any of Bermuda’s 181 islands.

According to reports from The Royal Gazette, Kenneth Butterfield, 45, confessed to importing the controlled substance into Bermuda during his appearance in Magistrates’ Court. Initially facing charges of possession with intent to supply, this charge was eventually dropped.

Butterfield detailed his return to the island from the U.K. on February 16, 2023, followed by his arrest for refusing an X-ray by customs officials at L.F. Wade International Airport in Bermuda. Subsequently, he underwent drug testing at King Edward VII Memorial Hospital, where he excreted a total of 52 hashish pellets over two days, totaling 110.76 grams.

Cindy Clarke, Director of Public Prosecutions, highlighted the substantial street value of the seized hashish, exceeding $11,000 if sold by the ounce. Magistrate Maria Sofianos ordered reports to be prepared for Butterfield, who has prior convictions for similar offenses, scheduling his sentencing for March 28, 2024. He was released on $25,000 bail with one surety and instructed to surrender all travel documents.

This incident sheds light on Bermuda’s stringent stance on cannabis-related offenses, with amounts exceeding 7 grams often resulting in jail time. Bermuda’s Public Awareness Fact Sheet underscores the legal consequences of cannabis possession and distribution, emphasizing the island’s commitment to enforcing anti-drug laws.

Regarding cannabis legalization efforts, Bermuda has faced challenges, notably with a failed attempt in September 2022 due to opposition from the United Kingdom. The U.K. cited international obligations under drug control conventions as grounds for preventing Bermuda’s proposed Cannabis Licensing Bill from receiving royal assent.

Despite setbacks in legalization, entrepreneurs Kim Caisey and Rickai Robinson launched the Bermuda Cannabis Association (BCA) in October, aiming to establish a self-regulatory body for the island’s cannabis industry. The BCA seeks to promote professionalism and ethics within Bermuda’s cannabis sector.

The incident involving Butterfield underscores the complexities of drug regulation and enforcement in Bermuda, highlighting ongoing debates surrounding cannabis legislation and its impact on the island’s legal landscape.


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