An ice dealer found with a "staggering" amount of suspected stolen property could spend more than four years in prison.
Lee Zarb, 41, was sentenced in the County Court in Bendigo on Tuesday after pleading guilty to trafficking methamphetamine, cultivating cannabis, handling stolen goods, committing an indictable offence on bail, contravening bail conditions, possessing cartridge ammunition, and dealing with property suspected to be the proceeds of crime.
Judge Michael Murphy sentenced Zarb to four years and three months' imprisonment with a non-parole period of two years and three months. He had already served 344 days of pre-sentence detention.
"Ice is a pernicious drug which is wreaking havoc in the community," Judge Murphy said.
Zarb was also fined $800 for the ammunition possession.
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Police raided an East Bendigo home on the morning of November 17, 2017 and uncovered numerous snap-lock bags and a vacuum-sealed bag containing methamphetamine, tick sheets, numerous sets of digital scales and empty snap-lock bags.
The methamphetamine weighed 67 grams in its pure form, but some belonged to a co-offender who pleaded guilty to possession.
Three small cannabis plants were found in the backyard of the Lloyd Street property and another two in the garage.
Security camera footage from the property showed Zarb watering the plants.
There were also 10 watches in the home, which had been stolen from Kennington the previous September.
A vast quantity of other stolen property was also discovered, including power tools, trousers and a belt and gun holster belonging to Victoria Police, 25 mobile phones, tablets, computers, 18 laptops, numerous licences, healthcare cards and other identity documents, cameras, alcohol, headphones, monitors, a torch, hand tools, $1660 cash, a handbag, razors, a vacuum cleaner, and other items.
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Police found rounds of .22 and .38 ammunition, although Zarb did not hold a firearm licence.
Zarb and two co-offenders were arrested at the home for breaching bail conditions for prior alleged offending.
Zarb was also on a community corrections order.
Defence counsel Mark Sturges said his client's offending stemmed from a drug addiction that had been present for most of his adult life.
Mr Sturges submitted the trafficking was a small operation and there was no forensic evidence to link Zarb to the drugs found, but he admitted to selling to friends.
He said prison was a suitable sentence given Zarb's criminal history and first asked Judge Murphy to consider this combined with a community corrections order, but withdrew that submission at the instruction of Zarb.
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Mr Sturges conceded his client had a significant criminal history, but said his guilty plea saved the community a trial and Zarb was developing insight and accepting the seriousness of his addiction.
Prosecutor David Cordy said the "staggering" amount of stolen property was a serious example of that offending.
Mr Cordy conceded the cultivation charge was at the lower end of gravity, but said the trafficking charge was at least mid-range offending.
"This drug is a scourge on society - here he is in the business of selling it," he said.
In sentencing, Judge Murphy noted Zarb was on a community correction order for offending that included trafficking heroin and had prior convictions for cultivating cannabis, dishonesty offences and contravening bail and community correction orders.
But he took into account Zarb's guilty plea and the suggestion he showed insight into his behaviour.
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