Bendigo man caught with 22 ecstasy pills has community correction order removed so he can become a teacher

A BENDIGO man caught in possession of 22 ecstasy pills last year has had the final portion of his community correction order dropped to enable him to become a teacher.

The man in his 20s appeared in the Bendigo Magistrates’ Court on Friday to apply to have the final months of the order removed so he could be registered to teach in Victoria.

He completed his Masters Degree in Teaching, specialising in PE and health, and the remaining community correction order was the only obstacle in the way of registration. 

The man avoided conviction for trafficking ecstasy when he was sentenced last year and was placed on the community correction order.

The court heard police found the pills on the ground in a park in May, and the man was only charged after admitting they belonged to him.

He planned to distribute the pills to his friends during a night out without receiving payment, the court was told.

The man attended two contested hearings before eventually pleading guilty to the charge.

His application to be registered as a teacher was rejected earlier this year because of the community correction order, but he was informed he would be accepted if the order was removed. The Victorian Institute of Teaching will review his case later this year.

The court was told the man has complied with all aspects of the order.

The man said it was “not in the public’s interest” for the order to remain in place.

Magistrate Ross Maxted said he would not normally seek to override another magistrate, but the man had complied with the order and was co-operative with police at the time. 

He said the man was only charged after admitting that the pills belonged to him.

“They could have been anyone’s,” Mr Maxted said.

“You have no priors, you are a law-abiding and well educated man. A community correction order is a serious sentence.”

The court approved his application to have the order removed.