Former Ice Breaker pleads not guilty to dealing meth
An Albany man accused of dealing methamphetamine while in a “senior role” with the Ice Breakers drug rehabilitation program has pleaded not guilty.
Craig Raymond Golding pleaded not guilty to 15 counts of offering to sell or supply methamphetamine when he fronted Albany Magistrate’s Court on Thursday.
Mr Golding pleaded guilty to charges of possession of meth, cannabis and drug paraphernalia and driving with drugs in his system.
He pleaded not guilty to failing to obey a data access order.
The court was told Mr Golding allegedly offered to sell or supply methamphetamine on 15 occasions from August 23 to October 12 last year.
Prosecuting Sgt Peter Yuswak told the court police wanted the charges to be heard in the District Court.
He argued a greater penalty range in the higher jurisdiction would be appropriate given the seriousness of the offences.
“At the time of the committed offence he was employed in a senior role at Ice Breakers — a State Government-funded program to help addicts,” he said.
“It’s a complex trial.”
But defence lawyer David Manera argued the matter should remain in the magistrate’s court.
“It appears to me that the entire prosecuting case rests on downloading SMS messages from a mobile phone,” he said.
“It doesn’t appear to be relying on other evidence.
“Given the amount, there is adequate sentencing charges available in the magistrate’s court.”
Magistrate Raelene Johnston dismissed the application for the charges to be dealt with in the higher court.
“The interest in the matter and the nature of his work — that’s not something that should be considered in where it’s dealt with,” she said.
“It will remain in the magistrate’s court.”
Mr Golding made his first appearance in Albany Magistrate’s Court on December 20.
The trial is scheduled to start on October 3.
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