Man arrested for video encouraging teenager to smoke weed

Picture used for representational purposes only. File

Picture used for representational purposes only. File | Photo Credit: SRINIVASAN K.V.

Excise officials on Tuesday arrested a man after a video that reportedly showed him encouraging a teenage girl to smoke ganja went viral on social media.

The arrested is Nevin Francis Augustine aka Mattancherry Marty, 34, of Fort Kochi. Officials also recovered two grams of ganja, which qualified as small quantity, from him. He was booked under Sections 21 and 29 of the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act.

In the video, the accused can be seen actively encouraging a teenage girl to use ganja, while he himself can be seen smoking. “We took cognizance of the offence as soon as the video came to our notice. Though seizure of small quantity of ganja is a bailable offence, we have chosen to deny him bail and rather produce him in court considering the seriousness of the offence,” said P.V. Aleyas, Deputy Excise Commissioner, Ernakulam.

Efforts are on to track down the whereabouts of the girl. In the video, the girl could be heard telling the accused that she was just released from jail after being trapped in a drug case involving her friend. She also brags about using ganja daily and laments that the stuff is not available at her place. To this, the accused responds that she could arrange it from Kothamangalam.

“We have no plan to arraign her as an accused but want to alert her parents. We could arrange for her free de-addiction, if needed,” said Mr. Aleyas.

“Unfortunately, there seems to be no provision other than what we have already invoked for instigating drug use,” said V.S. Pradeep, Excise Inspector, Mattancherry, who made the arrest.

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Printable version | Sep 20, 2022 11:27:26 am | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Kochi/man-arrested-for-video-encouraging-teenager-to-smoke-weed/article65750503.ece