Judge blasts South Burnett meth dealer and father
A single father has narrowly avoided spending time in prison after he supplied meth in the Burnett while addicted to the drug himself.
Mark Holton, 53, faced Kingaroy District Court on Monday, February 15, on two charges of supplying a dangerous drug and possession of a mobile phone used in commission of a crime.
The court was told in May last year, police executed a search warrant at the single-father's home where they found clip sealed bags which contained 0.1 grams of methylamphetamine, used needles and syringes that had not been appropriately disposed off, and a glass pipe among other things.
Holton's mobile phone was also seized.
While the minor drug possession was dealt with in Kingaroy Magistrates court, analysis of his phone led to Holton being charged with supply charges.
Crown prosecutor William Slack told the court on May 14, Holton offered to sell 1 gram of meth to a contact via text.
Then, six days later on May 20, he sold 0.3 grams of meth for $150.
He submitted a 6 to 12 month prison sentence would be appropriate, with immediate release via with parole or a suspended jail term.
Barrister Robert Glenday represented Holton, who pleaded guilty to the three charges.
Mr Glenday told the court Holton was already engaging with probation and had been off drugs for three months.
"He also has a 12-year-old son. He has the added burden of [looking after] his son who suffers with Aspergers," he said.
"His primary concern now is his son understands that if he goes back to using drugs or goes to jail, it'll be his son that suffers and there's no one else to look after his son."
Judge Gary Long S.C. accepted Mr Glenday's submissions, but noted it would be a long road for Holton to kick his addiction.
"You're Client needs to understand it's a very fair concession that's made by the prosecution. This is a pernicious drug and dealing in it in the community is a serious matter," Judge Long said.
"It's concerning that you've got the progression that he comes to police attention in April. In May these offences are committed. And then again in October last year, he still got the drug."
He then addressed Holton directly.
"There is a need in dealing with you to properly denounce and recognise the level of seriousness of your offending," he said.
"You must well know because of your own problems with this drug - the nature of it."
On the first count of supply, Holton was sentenced to six months in prison, nine months for the second count of supply, and three months for possessing the phone.
His term was then suspended for three years.