A Napier man has been remanded for sentence after admitting charges related to alleged selling an estimated 367 grams of methamphetamine – traced by messages on his cellphones.
Appearing in Napier District Court on Friday, two days before his 44th birthday, William David Taylor pleaded guilty to representative charges of supplying methamphetamine and possessing methamphetamine for supply in the seven weeks from September 26 and November 14.
Conducting a wider methamphetamine investigation in Hawke's Bay, police obtained a "production order" to seize Taylor's cell phones, and found text messages said to link him at least 10 transactions with customers in Hawke's Bay and an on-supplier in Palmerston North.
Sums of up to $6000 an ounce (28 grams) were mentioned, and in one case Taylor told the Palmerston North dealer he had one and a half ounces available for $10,000, a police summary said.
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CCTV images captured one of the transactions taking place at a Napier supermarket.
While the maximum penalty for supply methamphetamine is life imprisonment, Taylor was allowed continued bail on compassionate grounds to appear for sentence on December 8.
A woman appearing in the Napier court in May in an unrelated case and described by a judge as a "poster child" for methamphetamine's grip and a fall from grace was sentenced to three years' jail for providing "safe house" storage of methamphetamine - 446 grams of which was found on the property.
Methamphetamine trade sentences imposed in New Zealand courts in the last year range up to that of 27 and a half years last December in Auckland for Ricky Tat Choi Leung, 63, in Auckland, for his part in major importation.