Massive powdered fentanyl haul nets man seven years
By Canadian Press
By Canadian Press
Deanis Smith, 27, plead guilty in Sarnia Court Mar. 29 to trafficking the drug. It’s a conviction receiving little leniency from judges given the devastating effects of fentanyl on the community.
Smith’s punishment was no different after he was discovered with 143 grams of the deadly narcotic during a May 2020 raid at an East St. South home in Sarnia. The amount seized was in powdered form, making it even more lethal.
“The fact that Mr. Smith chose to participate in trafficking such a substance into the community is extremely devastating and concerning, and must warrant a significant period of incarceration,” says Justice Anne McFadyen. “A message must be sent to Mr. Smith and others who choose to traffic in such a substance that the consequences will be severe.”
After $18,000 cash was found in a duffel bag, Smith’s drug and cash total topped $90,000. Three other people were arrested and face a variety of charges.
“It is Russian roulette for addicts,” says Smith’s Defence Lawyer Neil Rooke, who says users “can succumb to this drug relatively easily as a result of the people who sell it not knowing the potency, and not being able to accurately measure it.”
Rooke added he has several clients who have passed away to overdoses in recent years. Smith has lost friends as well, and has himself been resuscitated with naloxone after overdosing.
But this life-threatening experience, and even a previous two-year sentence for the same crime, did nothing to sway Smith’s actions. “He understands that he has to change his lifestyle or the sentences won’t get shorter, which is a terrifying prospect for someone looking at a seven year jail sentence,” says Rooke.
Smith was also sentenced to 18 months jail for a bizarre break and enter in December. He went with another man to a house where they believed the owners stole $5,000 from them. After busting down the front door of the Kipling St. home and threatening the people inside with a hammer, Smith realized he was at the wrong house. “Sorry, I’ll pay for the damages,” he said before leaving.
Smith was quickly arrested by police next door at the address of his intended target. “I’m so stupid, I can’t believe I went to the wrong place,” he told officers.
McFadyen says the invasion “must have been absolutely terrifying? makes one wonder how they will ever feel safe in their own residence again.”
Smith has credit for 420 days time served, leaving him five years, 10 months and 10 days on the trafficking charge. The 1.5 year break and enter sentence will run concurrent to these seven years.
Smith also forfeits the $18,000 cash and a replica firearm, receives a lifetime weapons ban, will submit a DNA order, and must pay $507 restitution for the busted door.