Thimphu police re-arrested an escaped convict on 5th July 2018 from Khasadrapchu at around 10:30 AM. The 45-year-old convict who is from Paro was initially arrested on 2nd December 2013 for illegal transaction of controlled substances.
The convict managed to escape on 27th January 2014 when he was taken to hospital for treatment while he was under trail. Though he managed to escape, the court pronounced his judgment on 25 July 2014 and convicted him for nine years.
The judgment also stated that, the prison term for convict shall be counted from the day he is re-arrested. Police said that, the convict during his escape was travelling in and out of the country. Now that he is arrested, the convict might be additionally charged for escaping from lawful custody.
The convict was charged as per section 499 of Penal Code of Bhutan (PCB) 2004 which states, the offence of illegal transaction of controlled substances shall be a felony of the fourth degree.
Police also said that, suspects who were convicted for illegal transaction of controlled substance for SP+ between June 2015 to 27 July 2017, which is after the enactment of Narcotic Drugs, Psychotropic Substances and Substance Abuse (NDPSSA) Act of Bhutan 2015 where out after Thrimthue.
This is because SP+ was not reflected in the schedule of NDPSSA Act of Bhutan 2015.
However, in his case, police said that, he will not be allowed to pay any Thrimthue since his conviction was before the enactment of the Act.
Therefore, since there is no specific name of drug mentioned in the section, the suspect was charged for illegal transaction of controlled substances. Police said that, court will now decide on how many additional years he will have to serve for escaping lawful custody.
As per section 172 of PCB 2004, the offence of escape from lawful custody shall be a misdemeanor in addition to the remaining sentences of which the defendant is undergoing.