A Dunedin university student sold Ritalin to other students
who believed it helped them study, the Dunedin District Court
Druvi Patrick Rodrigo (23) appeared before Judge Grant Fraser
and admitted selling the drug methylphenidate (Ritalin)
between February 1 and September 28 last year.
He was convicted and remanded for sentence on April 26. The
summary from Crown counsel Richard Smith said Ritalin was a
class B drug which was legitimately prescribed for the
treatment of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).
In recent years, it had become popular in the illicit scene,
being sought-after for its ''speed''-like effects.
Last August, Dunedin police became aware of an associate of
the defendant supplying his prescription Ritalin to other
students at the university. He was also selling Ritalin
obtained from other people. An analysis of text-message data
from his cellphone led to the identification of Rodrigo as a
Rodrigo did not have a prescription for the drug but messages
from his phone showed he was obtaining it from an associate
in Auckland. The associate would send ''trays'' (blister
packs of 10 pills or capsules) once Rodrigo had ordered and
paid for them. The phone data also showed Rodrigo was
supplying Ritalin to three associates.
When police searched the defendant's flat on September 27,
they found 17 20mg Ritalin tablets in his room. He admitted
he had been selling the drug since last February. An
associate had said he could supply him with it and he thought
he could take advantage of that.
He told police he would buy the 20mg tablets for $5 each and
sell them for $10 each or a tray for $100. And he would buy
10mg pills for $2.50 each and sell them for $5 each or $50 a
tray. He would usually get four trays at a time. Rodrigo
expressed his regret for what he had done.