Joondalup: Teenager sent to jail for dealing to fund own drug habit

Joondalup Magistrates Court.
Joondalup Magistrates Court.

A TEENAGER who sold ecstasy and cocaine in the northern suburbs to feed his own drug habit has been sentenced to more than a year in jail.

Michael John Reid (19) faced the District Court on Thursday, pleading guilty to seven counts of intending to sell and supply drugs.

The court heard Reid, who had no prior convictions, dealt in about 130 ecstasy pills and 14.6g of cocaine between June and August last year.

The Organised Crime Squad had been listening to his phone calls.

State Prosecutor Peter Phillips referred to Reid’s pre-sentence report in which Reid said he “snorted” the profits of his drug dealing.

Defence lawyer Gavin MacLean pushed for a suspended prison sentence given his client was a young first-time offender, who dealt drugs, not for profit, but to fund his own habit.

He said Reid was “universally regarded as someone of very good repute” from a “very supportive, stable family background”.

The offender’s parents and girlfriend were at the hearing.

“He has had the wake up call as a young man and he’s seen the reality of a drug-fuelled lifestyle and… has nothing but regrets,” Mr MacLean said.

But Judge Alan Troy said there was “no principle that dealers who are drug users should be treated more leniently”.

“I am unable to be persuaded that this is in any way an exceptional case to warrant the imposition of a sentence of anything other than immediate imprisonment,” he said.

Mr Phillips described details of five telephone calls in which Reid organised to buy or sell ecstasy and cocaine.

In one of the calls in June he arranged to deliver cocaine to a male in Heathridge.

On another occasion in June, Reid organised to meet in the carpark of a Noranda fast food outlet on Benara Road to pick up an ‘eight ball’ (3.5g) of cocaine for $1400.

On June 16, investigators recorded a conversation where he arranged to buy about 55 ecstasy pills for $500.

He first came into contact with police when officers stopped the vehicle he was driving on Adamson Close in Kingsley about 6.45pm on August 18.

Police discovered he was in possession of 6.6g of cocaine and uncovered 82 ecstasy tablets in a bag hidden in his underwear.

Mr MacLean said his client ceased drug use after police charged him that night.

He said Reid’s cocaine use was sporadic at first after he tried it at a party, but it became a habit that led to him dealing drugs.

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