Ice trafficker ‘corrupted’ teen girlfriend
A STREET-LEVEL drug pusher "corrupted" his teen girlfriend as he ran a lucrative and busy ice trafficking business in Central Queensland.
Now 43, he sourced drugs from 23 suppliers and was supporting at least 37 customers in their addiction to either methylamphetamine or marijuana.
When the man, who cannot be named for legal reasons, could not get a job he began peddling drugs as a means of supporting his children, himself and his own habit.
As a result he became the target of a police operation to stamp out drug supply.
Crown prosecutor Sandra Cupina labelled it a "robust" drug trafficking business that ran between May 8 and December 1 in 2018 in an area west of Mackay.
Mackay Supreme Court was told in that time frame police identified 301 conversations involving either an offer to supply or an actual supply of drugs.
Ms Cupina also labelled the man a "direct corrupter" of his teen girlfriend, who was more than two decades younger than him and heavily involved in the affair.
The teen, who also cannot be named for legal reasons, has already been sentenced for her involvement in his trafficking business.
Defence barrister Paul Rutledge said his client rejected claims that he had introduced his young girlfriend to drugs, but conceded he would have had influence over her due to their age difference.
Mr Rutledge told the court that his client, after having been involved in selling drugs for a lengthy period of time, had made the decision to shut up shop because "he's had enough of it" months before his arrest.
"That in my submission is an excellent indicator to the prospects of rehabilitation of him," Mr Rutledge said.
The court was told that during the trafficking period he sold ice in varying amounts from single points for $50 up to half balls, or 1.75 grams, for $750 and marijuana from $50 for a gram to $400 for an ounce, or 28 grams.
He even told customers he might be able to source larger amounts on request.
Ms Cupina told the court it was difficult to calculate profit but said the turnover was about $30,000.
The man pleaded guilty to trafficking, aggravated possession of drugs and possessing drugs.
He would usually drive to Mackay to source and buy drugs. However, the court was told that two associates were intercepted with 42 grams of ice, and most if not all had been intended for the man.
Justice David North noted that the man was busy and constantly had to replenish his stock.
Since his arrest he had already spent 452 days in pre-sentence custody.
He was jailed for five and a half years with parole eligibility on July 31 this year because of time already served.
"Be careful when you are released, the police may keep an eye on you," Justice North told him.
"Just when you think they're not around, they may pay you a visit."