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Iphone text message. Catherine Merritt

Drug dealer's text trail leads police back to Mr Black

AFTER the police confiscated a mobile phone during a drug raid, they traced a drug dealing text trail back to Kenneth Barnard Black.

Dressed suitably in black, the Gracemere man faced the Rockhampton District Court pleading guilty to five charges of unlawfully supplying a dangerous drug between March 29, 2016 and May 24, 2016 and one charge of possessing a thing (mobile phone) used in connection with supplying a dangerous drug.

Upon tendering a copy of Black's criminal history, Crown Prosecutor Edward Fleetwood said it "speaks to his issues with drugs”.

In addition to numerous charges over the past decade for the possession of dangerous drugs, Black was imprisoned for 2.5 years after a spate of armed home invasions in 2010.

"Armed with a tyre iron and in company with three other people, performed three home invasions on the one day,” Mr Fleetwood said.

"They attended these addresses believing they could take dangerous drugs from the occupants.

"The defendant's conduct shows he's prepared to offend to feed his drug habit.”

READ: Rocky gang jailed after assaults

Mr Fleetwood said Black was also guilty of failing to meet his community supervision requirements - failing to report, failing to attend community service and fleeing from drug urinalysis testing resulting in his parole being suspended.

On May 24, 2016, the police raided Black's property discovering clip-seal bags and powder used to cut drugs.

In an interview with police, Black revealed he had exchanged text messages with a man he had known for eight months named Sean Randall whom he bought drugs for and from.

Mr Fleetwood said the five occasions of supplying a total of 0.62g of a schedule 1 drug (methamphetamine) could be categorised at the lower end of the scale.

Defence Barrister Jordan Ahlstrand said his client Black was in a de facto relationship for the past six years and was looking after a 10-year-old child.

He said over the years Black had struggled with drug abuse, depression and finding lasting employment

Judge Michael Burnett described Black as a "middle man trying to support his own habit” and didn't think the community would want another "petty drug criminal clogging up the jail system”.

He believed a supervised punishment was the best way to guide Black's rehabilitation by handing down a 15 month suspended sentence with random drug testing.

"The purpose of this order is to give you a chance at rehabilitation,” Mr Burnett said.

"If there are any trances in your blood stream you will be taken off to prison, likewise if you pull a stunt like you did on a previous occasion by not providing a urinalysis specimen for testing, expect to have your parole suspended and be taken back to prison.”



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