Community

Roma drug user avoids jail time

COURT: A Roma man has narrowly avoided going to jail for drug supply after facing District Court last week.
COURT: A Roma man has narrowly avoided going to jail for drug supply after facing District Court last week. Contributed

A 25-YEAR-OLD Roma man has narrowly avoided going to jail for drug supply after facing District Court last week.

Scott Kenneth Rudken was charged with three counts of supplying a dangerous drug and one count of possessing a mobile phone used in connection to offering to supply dangerous drugs.

On March 6, 2017, Roma Police pulled over a car in which Rudken was the passenger.

Officers searched his phone and found text messages offering to supply drugs.

He declined an interview with police and faced Roma Magistrates Court for a full hand-up committal on August 15.

Police prosecutor Jane Shaw said Rudken was on parole for drug offences at the time of his arrest.

"Despite opportunities provided to him by the court previously, he has not taken advantage of them,” she said.

Defence barrister John Bailey said Rudken was anxious to get out of Roma.

"He has a job to go to in Calliope,” he said.

"He is not work-shy and this new job could be just the thing he needs to break this cycle.

"It's in the community's interest that rehabilitation take place. He is a relatively young man who deserves one last chance.”

Before sentencing Rudken, Judge Ian Dearden asked if there was anything the defendant would like to tell the court.

"I've done wrong,” Rudken said.

"I have a two-year-old daughter I've got to think about and I'm sorry to my mum too.”

Rudken said he had been attending Drug ARM - which provides intervention, prevention and recovery for drug use - for four weeks.

"I know what I've got to do to stay on the right path now,” he said.

Judge Dearden said it was difficult to decide whether the defendant should remain in the community or serve a prison sentence.

"You appeared before the court on February 28 this year and by March 3 you were on your mobile phone, making arrangements for the supply of dangerous drugs,” he said.

"That was an appalling lapse of judgment.

"Your family can love you for who you are, but they can despise what you have done.”

Rudken was sentenced to 15 months jail for drug supply and six months for possession of the phone, to be served concurrently.

The sentence was suspended immediately and Rudken will spend 15 months on parole.


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