A SUNRAYSIA under 18 footballer has avoided a conviction for drugs offences after admitting he sold cannabis to his 16-year-old cousin.
The Mildura Magistrates’ Court heard the player had stopped using cannabis since he was found with drugs in his car in August.
The court heard police intercepted the man’s ute shortly after midnight on August 29.
The ute’s registration was suspended and police spoke to the footballer and his 16-year-old cousin in the passenger seat, suspecting they may have been in possession of illicit drugs.
Prosecutor Senior Constable Kristen Simm said the younger cousin produced a cigarette box containing cannabis in a sealed bag, while a further search uncovered more cannabis, including some in a black box wrapped with black tape and the word “buds” scratched into it.
The pair were taken back to the police station for an interview and the 18 year-old was charged, while his cousin was issued with a caution.
Messages on the man’s phone showed he had been supplying cannabis to his cousin.
He admitted doing so when interviewed by police although he told them he “never sold to strangers”.
Defence counsel Gavan Tellefson said the cannabis use had been a “relatively new part of his life” and that his client’s drug use was lower during winter because it affected his football.
He said his client had pleaded guilty, showed good prospects and had no criminal record.
“He’s fallen off the perch but is otherwise getting himself up and back in the right direction,” Mr Tellefson said.
Magistrate Gregory McNamara placed the footballer on a 12-month good behaviour bond and ordered he pay $500 to a Magistrates’ Court fund.
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