Party pills plot foiled

Snif­fer dog halts plan to smug­gle MDMA tabs into Falls Fes­ti­val

Mercury (Hobart) - - NEWS - AM­BER WIL­SON

TWO teenagers who planned to smug­gle dozens of MDMA pills into the Mar­ion Bay Falls Fes­ti­val, only to have their plot foiled by a po­lice snif­fer dog, have avoided a stint in jail.

In De­cem­ber last year, Chev Lee Dea­con asked Jax­son Paul Foster if he would take al­most 100 MDMA pills into the fes­ti­val in re­turn for $2 pay­ment per pill.

The two 18-year-olds met at a Launce­s­ton Kmart carpark, with Dea­con hand­ing over the party drugs.

But as he en­tered the fes­ti­val on De­cem­ber 29, Dea­con was stopped by po­lice for drug and al­co­hol screen­ing.

A po­lice drug de­tec­tion dog in­di­cated the pres­ence of il­licit sub­stances on the teen, who handed over his mo­bile phone to po­lice, which showed de­tailed ev­i­dence of the smug­gling plans.

In sen­tenc­ing last week, Act­ing Jus­tice Brian Martin said the phone ev­i­dence il­lus­trated the “am­a­teur­ish na­ture” of the plans be­cause Dea­con had not taken any pre­cau­tions to re­move the mes­sages.

How­ever, he said, the crime was “not en­tirely am­a­teur­ish”.

Dea­con told po­lice he was not mak­ing a profit from the drugs, and was sim­ply bring­ing them into the fes­ti­val for friends and per­sonal use.

Af­ter the po­lice in­ter­view, Dea­con named Foster as the per­son he had en­listed to smug­gle the drugs in.

About half an hour later, po­lice stopped Foster’s ve­hi­cle, in which they found a bot­tle of vodka with 99 MDMA pills in­side vac­uum-sealed plas­tic bags.

Foster told po­lice he was not go­ing to take any of the MDMA pills him­self, adding he was not ex­pect­ing to get “stitched up”.

In July this year, both youths ap­peared in the Launce­s­ton Mag­is­trates Court and pleaded not guilty to traf­fick­ing charges.

But last month, they in­di­cated they wished to change their pleas to guilty.

Dea­con was con­victed of traf­fick­ing, fined $1400 and given a sus­pended three­month jail term.

Act­ing Jus­tice Martin ac­cepted Foster was “just help­ing out a friend”.

The youth es­caped con­vic­tion but was fined $2500.

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