Jail time for man caught with kilo of cocaine

Speeding past an unmarked police car near Keremeos three years ago will cost a Burnaby man his freedom.

Speeding past an unmarked police car near Keremeos three years ago will cost a Burnaby man his freedom since the subsequent traffic stop also turned up a kilogram of cocaine.

Graham Victor Jordan, 50, was sentenced Monday in B.C. Supreme Court in Penticton to one year in jail after being convicted following a trial in May on a single count of possession of a controlled substance for the purpose of trafficking.

Crown counsellor James Whiting argued for a 2.5-year jail sentence, since the amount of cocaine involved in the case indicated Jordan had “embarked into the commercial level of distribution.”

Defence counsel Brian Jackson said his client was a “serious addict” at the time of the offence and agreed to transport the cocaine from the Lower Mainland to the Kootenays in exchange for $1,500 to support his drug habit.

Jordan sought to have the case thrown out at the beginning of trial in May due to alleged violations of his Charter rights, including being improperly detained and subjected to a warrantless search, when he was arrested on Nov. 3, 2011.

However, Justice Selwyn Romilly ruled at trial in May that the arresting officer, Cpl. Ryan McLeod, acted properly during the traffic stop.

In his reasons for judgment, Romilly wrote that Jordan was pulled over on Highway 3 a few kilometres outside Keremeos by McLeod, whose unmarked police car he passed doing 153 km/h in a 100 km/h zone.

As McLeod attended to paperwork in his cruiser, he saw Jordan, whom he noted had been involved in two cocaine-related police files over the previous year, stand by the passenger door to block the officer’s view of the female passenger.

Later, the officer noticed what he suspected was drug paraphernalia inside the woman’s bra. He also saw Jordan reach repeatedly inside his jacket pocket, prompting the Mountie to place both of them under arrest out of concern for his own safety.

The officer subsequently searched the vehicle and found the one-kilogram package of cocaine in a duffel bag, which also contained men’s clothing, on the car’s back seat.