A Kaitangata mother of two has been sentenced to two years
and eight months in jail for dealing methamphetamine and BZP
in Invercargill and Balclutha late last year and early this
Sentencing her in the Dunedin District Court yesterday, Judge
Stephen O'Driscoll said he found it "somewhat ironic"
Kimberley Jane Owen (31) was learning to be a social worker
at the time she was feeding people in her community a highly
addictive and destructive drug.
Owen pleaded guilty earlier this year to 12 charges, some
representative, under the Misuse of Drugs Act related to
dealing methamphetamine and BZP late last year and earlier
An associate is to face trial at a later date.
The drugs were sourced from an Auckland-based supplier while
Owen was studying at the Southland Institute of Technology
She sold the drugs for them, and took a cut of the profits.
The drugs were sent to her home, sometimes in packages
addressed to her 4-year-old son.
Crown counsel Marie Grills and Owen's lawyer, Anne Stevens,
told the court they agreed a starting point of about three
years in prison would be appropriate, given the amount of
methamphetamine was at the lower end of the spectrum.
Owen had already spent five months in custody in prison,
where she had given birth, and Mrs Stevens suggested the time
already served, her client's early guilty plea, remorse,
reports of good progress from her midwife and social worker
at Christchurch Women's Prison and an offer of a good home
could lead to a reduction in the starting point where the
court could consider home detention as a sentence.
Judge O'Driscoll took a starting point of three years and
eight months. From there, he reduced the sentence by a year
for Owen's early guilty plea, her remorse and her personal
circumstances, which, he said, appeared to show she was
trying to make something of her life.
"Miss Owen, you have spent your time in prison constructively
so far, and you need to continue to do so and make sure when
you are released from prison you give up the drugs
completely. They will get you nowhere in life, particularly