Drug-detection dogs at Hopkins Correctional Centre sniffed residue amounts of methamphetamine in a visitor's handbag, leading to possession charges, a court was told.
Gia Foley, 30, appeared at Ararat Magistrates' Court via video link and pleaded guilty to charges of possession of methamphetamine and bringing contraband items into a prison.
At 1.30pm on December 19, 2020 Foley visited Hopkins Correctional Centre alongside her mother to visit an inmate.
Upon arrival, a drug-detection dog at the prison indicated Foley was carrying contraband in her handbag, which correctional officers discovered to be a green plastic straw with methamphetamine residue on it.
Correction officers then took the drug-detection dog to the car Foley arrived in and found four small zip lock bags in the glovebox containing 2.8g methamphetamine.
Police officers arrived shortly after the discovery of the drugs and arrested both Foley and her mother.
She stated to the police she did not know about the drugs and her mother let many different people drive the car.
Despite locating the drugs on prison property, Foley's defence counsel said it was "pretty clear she had no intention of taking drugs from the car into the prison".
Magistrate Jonathan Klestadt agreed with her defence counsel's suggestion that she did not intend to bring the drugs into the prison.
"Despite a relatively significant history this is an offense which I am satisfied was not committed to introduce drugs into the prison system, it was an inadvertent act of a long term drug user," Mr Klestadt said.
"The risk is that with your history, if you are convicted with a large quantity of illicit substances in your possession or convicted by a court of serious offending, you are going to be looking at another term of imprisonment."
Foley was fined $500, and the drugs seized and destroyed.
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