Convicted drug trafficker started dealing at 13
A TOOWOOMBA man jailed for a 10-year drug trafficking business admitted he started dealing cannabis when he was just 13 years old.
Michael Steven Patch-Metzroth, 24, kicked off what became a decade long addiction to various drugs after he stole some of his mother's cannabis to smoke when he was just 13 years old, the Supreme Court at Toowoomba was told.
He started selling the cannabis to his friends and after a while was selling to support his own habit, Crown prosecutor Mark Green told the court.
By the time he was 20, Patch-Metzroth had dealt in most drugs including cocaine, ecstasy, meth and cannabis.
His barrister David Jones said his client had instructed that when the ice epidemic came to Toowoomba in 2016, he had started using and selling that drug.
His client had worked for a time as a trainee chef with a company at the Oakey Army Aviation Base but when his employer company lost the contract, he had lost his job and so focused on selling drugs, Mr Jones said.
Patch-Metzroth's drug business went undetected by police until his name popped up on the phone of another drug user which pointed to Patch-Metzroth as being the supplier, the court heard.
Mr Jones said his client would not have been charged with trafficking if not for his frank and honest admissions to police.
Mr Jones said his client wanted to turn his life around.
"He hopes to do courses in jail and return to society owing no debts to it," he said.
Justice Peter Applegarth noted at times Patch-Metzroth had a customer base of 70.
Justice Applegarth sentenced him to five years in jail but ordered he be eligible to apply for parole after 15 months from May 27 next year.