Teenage drug courier given mercy of the courts
"YOUR life is in your hands."
Those were the words Justice Duncan McMeekin spoke to 19-year-old Jesse Cameron Cornick as he granted immediate parole on the man's three year prison sentence.
Cornick pleaded guilty to one count of possessing dangerous drugs in the Rockhampton Supreme Court on Wednesday, after the Rockhampton-born man was found transporting three ounces (67.2g pure) of methamphetamine to the Gold Coast in 2015. Police call tapping tracked the supply to the Gladstone region.
He was just 17-years-old at the time.
Crown prosecutor Alexandra Baker told the court it was a wholesale quantity destined for a commercial distribution.
"It was part of a wider commercial enterprise in which his role was a courier," she said.
"It would be expected he would receive some benefit from participating in the transaction."
Defence barrister Tom Polley said Cornick had developed a daily meth habit at 16 after being introduced to the substance at a party, even using up to 2g a day.
The court heard Cornick had moved in with a friend's family at a young age after being kicked out from his own home.
"He was on the streets for a night before walking to a friend's place," Mr Polley said.
The two brothers from this family were also in the vehicle with Cornick when police uncovered the drugs.
Cornick was visibly shaken while sitting in the court's docks.
In handing down his sentence, Justice McMeekin said the facts of the case were "peculiar".
"As you have heard the maximum you face is 25 years in prison," he said.
"So at 19 you stand here... Prospectively with the rest of your adult life to be spent in jail. I hope you understand that."
"Courts are traditionally lenient with young people and they don't come any younger than 17... I am going to reduce the head sentence substantially... if you get back onto the drug scene, you are going to go straight to jail."