Public Prosecutor-General Ho Chio Meng said Sunday that the Public Prosecution Office (MP) has suggested to the government there should be tougher penalties for cases involving “huge amounts of drugs” or defendants who pushed others to engage in drug-related crimes.
Ho made the remarks to reporters on the sidelines of a public event at Lin Fong Temple which he attended as a guest.
Asked by reporters about what the Public Prosecution thought about possible amendments to the law regulating the production, trafficking in and taking of drugs, Ho said his office had drafted an initial proposal on the matter.
“We think there should be more severe penalties for some of the crimes…for example for those instigating others to engage in drug-related crimes or any case involving a huge amount of drugs…,” Ho said, adding that prosecutors were still discussing to which extent the penalties should be toughened.
The government is gathering opinions on the implementation of the law which was enacted in 2009 and amended early this year by including five new drugs including derivatives of piperazine.
Ho said the government should review and propose the amendments to the Legislative Assembly “at an appropriate time” so that the law can be effective in tackling drug-related crimes, adding he thought the law should be revised every three years.
Currently, the maximum prison term for drug-related crimes stands at 16 years. However, in extremely severe cases the punishment can amount to 21 years behind bars.
Unlike in Hong Kong, Macau’s Public Prosecution is not part of the government but belongs to the Judiciary.
All bills drafted by the government must be approved by the legislature to become law.(macaunews/macaupost)