Judge’s plea to ice user

A MAGISTRATE has implored a 21-year-old Sale ice user to turn his life around after sentencing him to three months gaol.

Nathan Roberts faced Sale Magistrates’ Court on Wednesday for sentencing over drug possession, firearms and handling stolen property charges.

Magistrate Fiona Hayes said she viewed his involvement in the drug world and illegal firearms as serious, with the potential for loss of life in the community.

Describing the ice epidemic as a “massive problem”, she said she was giving Roberts this one chance to get his life in order.

“It will require a huge change in your lifestyle to do,” she said.

“If you (continue to) go down this path, you will go to gaol and you will go for a long time,” she said.

Ms Hayes said the sentence would allow Roberts a chance to stay off ice and eventually integrate back into the community.

“This could easily have warranted 12 months or more,” she said.

She urged Roberts to think about what he would do on release, think about the people he associated with and what he would do if urged to take ice again, and use the support of his family.

“The choices you make when you get out are incredibly important,” she said.

“Your whole environment has to change.”

Roberts was charged with numerous offences following two police raids at his Sale residence which uncovered a large amount of stolen goods as well as ice, firearm parts and ammunition.

Police told the court Roberts was trading firearms and stolen goods for ice.

In addition to the custodial sentence, on release Roberts will also have to perform 200 hours unpaid community work, undertake a drug treatment and rehabilitation program, mental and medical health assessment and treatment and will be under judicial monitoring.

He was also issued with a $600 fine over handling explosives, relating to railway detonators which were taken from V/Line.

Roberts had already spent 47 days in custody, which will be taken off his sentence, making him eligible for release on October 15.

Ms Hayes said she would see Roberts six weeks from his release date to make sure he had complied with conditions.

Seized firearms and drugs were ordered destroyed.

During the trial Ms Hayes said it was important to impose a custodial sentence to send a message to the community.