Ice like a cancer, says Bendigo magistrate

At the sentencing of a young drug dealer yesterday, a magistrate likened ice to a “cancer” spreading through Bendigo.

Magistrate William Gibb slammed the actions of Daniel James Patullo, 23, who he said sold ice to make “big bucks” with no thought for the lives he was ruining.

Patullo was sentenced to 12 months’ jail on a string of drug charges, including the trafficking of methamphetamine, commonly known as ice.

He immediately appealed the sentence and was released on appeal bail.

Prosecuting, Senior Sergeant Brett Sheppard said Patullo and a co-accused were the subject of a major police investigation into ice trafficking that started in March.

Senior Sergeant Sheppard said the co-accused would regularly travel to Melbourne to buy ice and then Patullo would sell it on to about 15 local buyers while also frequently using the drug himself.

He said Patullo was also sourcing and selling ecstasy.

Senior Sergeant Sheppard said police searched Patullo’s father’s home on June 12 and seized a number of items including 0.7 grams of ice and a laptop believed to be the proceeds of crime.

The court also heard of two driving offences, within weeks of each other, where Patullo was found driving an unregistered vehicle while his licence was suspended.

Police found weapons in the car on both occasions, including a 75cm sword, an imitation Beretta handgun, two Tasers and a large knife.

Patullo’s lawyer Chris Traill conceded the seriousness of the charges meant his client would be facing jail time, but said Patullo had not been selling drugs as frequently as the prosecution made out.

Mr Gibb said he was worried that ice was “seeping through our community like cancer” and Bendigo was becoming known in the media as an ice capital.

“You did it because it was an easy way to make, in your words, ‘effing big bucks’,” he said. “You were selling this drug to people and destroying their lives like it has destroyed yours.”

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