Dad jailed for drug dealing

Jackson Lavell-LeeBusselton Dunsborough Times

A Busselton father-of-three has been sentenced to 20 months in prison for dealing methylamphetamine.

Troy Ernest Johnston was described by his lawyer Michael Tudori as a “family man” who was the sole carer for his children and terminally ill father.

Mr Tudori said after two years of financial stress because of unemployment, his 34-year-old client had turned to methylamphetamines.

On February 5, 2018, Johnston’s white station wagon was parked in bushland near Fish Road in Busselton when two police officers stopped.

Two men were standing by the vehicle and ran as police approached.

The men managed to escape police, but police returned to the car and found a ziplock bag which contained 15.7g of methylamphetamine with an 80 per cent purity. Forensics later found Johnston’s fingerprints on the bag and a cigarette nearby.

Johnston’s Busselton home was later searched, resulting in the discovery of several grams of cannabis, electric scales, smoking implements, and multiple mobile phones with messages relating to the sale of drugs.

Mr Tudori conceded Johnston had bought the drugs with the intention to sell them to recoup the costs of his drug habit.

District Court Judge Laurence Levy said because of the “significant amount” of high-purity methylamphetamine, a term of imprisonment was required.

However, because of a guilty plea and several character references, describing Johnston as a committed father, Judge Levy granted a 10 per cent sentence reduction.

“You don’t want your children growing up without you, but unfortunately that’s what drugs do,” he said.

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