Mark William Owens appeared before the Kingaroy District Court for breaching a suspended sentence. Photo/Facebook.
Mark William Owens appeared before the Kingaroy District Court for breaching a suspended sentence. Photo/Facebook.

Kingaroy dad sold meth to friend, faces potential jail term

A KINGAROY man luckily escaped spending Christmas behind bars for careless drug offences, instead piling another six months on top of his suspended jail sentence.

Mark William Owens, 25, was convicted back in May, 2019, for supplying methamphetamine to a family friend, earning himself $150. Standing before Kingaroy Magistrates Court, he received a six month prison sentence, which was suspended for a period of two years.

In the Kingaroy District Court hearing, prosecutor Alex Stark appeared on behalf of the Crown. He said Owens appeared before the court in relation to a breach of that sentence, namely he was found in possession of cannabis and drug utensils in July of this year.

Owens entered a plea of guilty to both breaching charges.

Mr Stark said although the charges were minor, being a breach of a suspended sentence, they are punishable by imprisonment.

"It was a very negligible amount for personal immediate use for smoking. Less than a gram or so," he said.

"It does appear that he has some issues with drugs. He's put himself on a very finely balanced precipice, given that it is involving further offences for drugs."

Catherine Cuthbert appeared on behalf of Owens instructed by the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander legal service.

"He has been dealing with a number of personal issues in the past year. The break-up of a relationship with the mother of his child," Ms Cuthbert said.

She said Owen suffers from depression and anxiety stemming from those circumstances.

"The breaching offences are drug offences, but they are cannabis as opposed to methylamphetamine," Ms Cuthbert said.

"He instructs that he is not drug dependent, but more of a recreational user, and quite frankly he needs to wise up."

Judge Geraldine Dann said while she accepts the defence's submission that this is a low level breach, any drug offence committed under a suspended sentence can have dire consequences.

"It is important that you understand that even a low level breach like that brings you back before this court and places you in serious jeopardy that you will be sent to jail in respect of the suspended sentence," she said.

Judge Dann extended Owens' suspended sentence by a further six months.

"I want to impress upon you that the judge sitting at this bench, if you come in here again, may well look very sternly on your situation. So you must be aware of that in terms of how you manage your life going forward," she said.

Convictions were recorded.