Albi: Three young people aged 19 to 28 prosecuted for drug trafficking

They were arrested on 31 October in Cantepo for possession of cash, cannabis resin and cocaine. The trial of three men brought to criminal responsibility for drug trafficking will take place on December 13.

On the night of 30/31 October, shortly after midnight, the Albigensian police checked three young men on the boulevard Maréchal Lannes in Cantepo. On board the vehicle, agents found more than 1,500 euros in cash, 80 grams of cannabis resin in individual sachets, and several cocaine capsules. Unsold inventory at the end of the day trade?

Three men, aged between 19 and 28, were arrested and taken into custody at the Albi police station. Searches conducted in their homes allowed investigators to find several more grams of tar, an electronic scale with traces of drugs, and handwritten reports.

Their detention was extended until the morning of 3 November. They were then handed over to the prosecutor’s office and immediately taken to the Albi court for an immediate trial. Two of the three defendants requested that the trial be adjourned in order to prepare their defense. The third stated that he was ready to appear before the court on the same day, but the court refused to separate the materials and therefore returned the case to December 13.

The magistrates then considered elements of each defendant’s personality to decide their fate before that date: placement under judicial supervision or pre-trial detention.

Two defendants in a state of recidivism

The youngest of them, aged 19, is also the only one who lives in Albi. Convicted of similar acts earlier in the year, he is under investigation for recidivism. He is also accused of refusing to give the police his phone’s unlock code. Released from prison last June, he says he “worked as a black man”, his first professional experience. His lawyer Me Soulans explains to the judges that his mother lives in Montpellier and is ready to provide him with accommodation before the hearing.

The oldest of them, 28 years old, from Nice, was the driver of the car at the time of the arrest. Protected by Mi Jimenez, he is also prosecuted for driving without insurance. He already has three convictions, the last of which was handed down in August 2021 by the court of Nice for acts of violence with weapons. He was released four months ago from the Toulon detention center. He explains to the magistrates that he is not working, that he intends to join the foreign legion, and that he has neither income nor permanent address.

Finally, the third defendant, aged 22, is also being prosecuted as a recidivist: in 2019, he was already convicted by a Paris juvenile court for similar acts. During his arrest, an Opinel knife was also found in his possession. He lives in Nîmes, says he has a contract with a local mission there and is looking for a job. His lawyer, Me Gosset, petitioned to place him under judicial supervision.

But the court followed the demands of Deputy Prosecutor Cyril Padilla by ordering the pre-trial detention of the three defendants, who were sent between the Albi, Seisses and Rodez pre-trial detention centers.

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