Ecstasy and now the agony

WITH nearly 900 ecstasy tablets, Rockhampton drug dealer Thomas Peter Smith stood to make $21,000.

Only he got caught.

Yesterday his $6000 investment landed him 12 months in jail. The 23-year-old pleaded guilty in the Supreme Court to numerous drug charges including possession and supply.

As his parents sat in the back of the courtroom, Smith, an unemployed man, hung his head for most of the proceedings.

It was probably the biggest moment of his life since being crushed under the wheels of a cement truck in an accident in Rockhampton, in 2002.

A subsequent financial payout for his injuries, which required more than 10 operations, enabled him to buy a black BMW.

It also financed his speed addiction.

In 2004, police intercepted Smith on a motorbike.

He began to shake and sweat before the officers found cannabis, methamphetamines and ecstasy tablets in his backpack.

In 2005, Smith increased his ecstasy stash during a trip to Sydney.

The drug scene was "too big there'', so he brought them back to Rockhampton to sell on the street.

He admitted making transactions with customers outside the Brunswick Hotel, Shopping Fair and at parties.

The cheapest he sold ecstasy for was $25 per tablet.

Police found text messages on his mobile, referring to "rounds'' (drug code for ecstasy tablets).

When asked how the message senders knew him, Smith said "word gets around''.

Justice Peter Dutney considered Smith's offending had occurred while he was on bail for other offences.

Justice Dutney sentenced him to three years jail, suspended after 12 months.

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