A British former model has been jailed for five years in Bali after being caught with around £30 worth of weed.
Jed Texas, an ex-Myer model, was handed the tough sentence on the Indonesian island after police discovered marijuana in his villa in Canggu.
Officers conducted the raid back in April this year, finding nine small plastic bags containing 85.15g of weed in addition to a set of plastic scales. The 30-year-old was then arrested.
Texas – real name Jed Higgins – admitted his guilt in jail via a video link to Denpasar District Court, with plans to appeal his conviction for possession of a type-two narcotic, as per news.com.au.
He also explained that he used marijuana as a means of treating his anxiety, exacerbated by not being able to return home during the current pandemic. ‘I couldn’t go home so I bought a lot of marijuana to relieve my anxiety,’ he said.
While Indonesian courts often consider this as a mitigating factor, Chief Judge Gede Putra Astaw took a stark view towards the man’s possession of drugs. He said, ‘Texas is guilty of committing a criminal act by possessing narcotics type one. I sentence Jed Texas to five years in prison, reduced for his [seven months] in detention.’
Until the ruling, Texas had been facing a maximum sentence of 20 years behind bars. However, in addition to five years in the ‘notorious’ Kerobokan Prison, he’s also been hit with a fine of around £60,000. If he cannot pay it, his sentence will be extended by a further six months.
The judge added, ‘The defendant’s actions have damaged the image of Bali as a tourist destination.’
I admit that my using marijuana in Indonesia is against the law. I am very sorry. I knew it was illegal, but I didn’t think the sentence would be so high like this. I use it to treat psychological disorders.
Marijuana is legal in the UK so my access to it is easy. This case has left me with constant pain and shame. My family was affected too. I never thought at all about breaking the law when I vacationed in Bali.
This isn’t strictly true. While medical forms of marijuana are available on strict prescription in the UK, possession, selling and recreational use of the drug are all still illegal.
Texas was born in Islington, England. He moved to Melbourne in 2015 as his modelling career was taking off, later jetting to Bali just as the pandemic started to surge earlier this year.
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