A chronic pain sufferer who peddled his prescription drugs to users has been placed on a community corrections order.
Mildura Magistrates’ Court yesterday heard Drago Lastavec trafficked his excess prescribed OxyContin drugs, a strong opioid, and his phone was buzzing from people wanting a fix even as police conducted an interview.
He pleaded guilty to trafficking a drug of dependence and possessing wildlife without a permit.
Police prosecutor Senior Constable Kristen Wadsworth said a search warrant was executed on his home in February this year.
During the search, police found crushed up OxyContin, scales, more than a hundred syringes, tools used to crush the tablets and deal bags.
Lastavec was arrested and interviewed, but denied dealing.
While police were interviewing him, Lastavec’s phone was going off with calls from known drug users.
Police also obtained a statement from an associate who said he bought drugs off Lastavec.
The court heard Lastavec, who has ongoing medical issues and suffers from chronic pain, had been on the pain killers since the mid-1990s.
Magistrate Andrew Capell said if still available to him, he would have sentenced him to a suspended sentence.
“Then the onus is left on him,” he said.
Instead he placed Lastavec on a community corrections order for 18 months.
“You are not a doctor,” Mr Capell said.
“You don’t prescribe drugs to people. You don’t know how they’re going to react to them.”
He said if Lastavec breached the CCO he risked going to prison, despite his health concerns.
For more of this story, purchase your copy of Friday's Sunraysia Daily 21/04/2017.To subscribe to our Digital Edition Click here