Collie men were convicted of selling drugs

Drug bust: South West Police executed search warrants on properties across Collie and Allanson on Friday, January 6. Photo: Thomas Munday.
Drug bust: South West Police executed search warrants on properties across Collie and Allanson on Friday, January 6. Photo: Thomas Munday.

Bunbury District Court Judge Stevenson found it ‘very hard to be sympathetic’ towards two men who were convicted of selling 31 grams of methylamphetamine in court on Monday January 29.

Collie men, Philip John Ugle and Cameron Mark Ugle pleaded guilty to the charge of selling a prohibited drug on January 6, 2017.

Philip also pleaded guilty to 12 other charges relating to selling methylamphetamine and cannabis and attempting to manufacture meth.

The court heard that Philip had agreed to sell methylamphetamine to people ranging from October 2016 to January 2017.

The amounts also ranged from weight and price including $50, $150, $300 and seven grams of methylamphetamine.

On January 6, both Philip and Cameron were in Harvey when they agreed to sell 31.1 grams of methylamphethamine, at a purity of 78 per cent to an undercover police operative.

The amount equated to $9,000 worth.

Later that day, police executed a search warrant for 25 Steere Road in Allanson where they found equipment and ingredients which were consistent of making methylamphetamine including plastic tubes, gloves, pumps, face masks, batteries, costic soda and an lpg cylinder.

Philip’s defense lawyer said the offender was a ‘small time drug dealer’ who was funding his own drug habit.

He said all the charges, excluding the one of 31 grams showed he was a ‘low volume dealer’ and the sentence should reflect that.

As a result of the quantities of the other charges, the defense lawyer asked if the judge could consider parole.

The lawyer said Philip used to be a respected Elder in his community and has shown willingness to be a role model to younger people.

He said because Philip had not been sentenced he had not had the chance to participate in programs and he was keen to do so while advising others not to take the same path as he did.

The prosecutor outlined Philip’s previous convictions in 2000 and 2011 where he served jail time for selling prohibited drugs and said there was no evidence to say he would be a good role model.

Judge Stevenson said selling small amounts of the drug only added to his criminality and did not minimise the harm it did to the community.

He said Philip was motivated by commercial greed and the smaller amounts did not deter from the intent to sell methylamphetamine to the community.

Philip Ugle was sentenced to five years jail with no parole and will be backdated from January 6, 2017.

Cameron Mark Ugle was a co-offender for the charge of selling a prohibited drug on January 6 and also pleaded guilty.

Cameron’s defense lawyer spoke about his good character and exemplary record up until this date.

She said Cameron grew up in Collie and did well at school and moved to Newman to undergo a boiler maker apprenticeship.

An injury forced him to stop working the trade and he moved back to Collie and started working in aboriginal health, she said.

She said things went down hill for Cameron when he moved back to Collie and it was then he became involved in drugs. 

She said his involvement in dealing drugs was also to fuel his drug habit.

The lawyer pleaded with the judge about providing a light or suspended sentence because he was a ‘special case’ and was an exemplary member of the community.

Judge Stevenson said Cameron’s personal circumstance did not detract from the seriousness of the crime.

He also criticised Cameron for not filling out his pre-sentence report where he would have found out about his good behaviour with work and the community sooner.

The prosecutor said it was ironic that Cameron had such an impressive CV but would then pedal such a destructive drug to the community.

“He may have been a role model but from the moment he got involved in drugs he became an embarrassment,” the prosecutor said.

Judge Stevenson said it was unknown what the reward was for Cameron with his addiction unsubstantiated.

He said while there was no proof Cameron was part of the attempted manufacturing he played more than a little role in selling the drugs.

Cameron was sentenced to two and half years jail which is backdated and is eligible for parole after half of his term is served.