AFTER spending a total of more than 17 years in jail for supplying drugs, a career crook caught with four kilograms of methamphetamine in his car at Sandgate and $275,000 buried in his backyard at Fullerton Cove has vowed he is finally done with a life of crime.
"I promise you will not see me in the courts again," Wayne Geoffrey Harrington told Judge Mark Williams on Monday. "If you do, you can lock me up for good."
The only problem for Harrington was, he said the same thing last time he was sentenced.
Harrington, who has spent the vast majority of the last 25 years in jail, was on Monday jailed again, this time for a maximum of five years and eight months after he pleaded guilty to supplying more than four kilograms of methamphetamine and more than 100 grams of cocaine and dealing with the proceeds of crime relating to the cash found in his backyard.
Judge Mark Williams ordered he serve a non-parole period of three years and two months, making him eligible for release in July, 2024.
Harrington was using encrypted applications, but police intercepts were able to uncover that Harrington was supplying cocaine and methamphetamine in quantities of an ounce or two at a time.
Defence barrister Avni Djemal, SC, said Harrington was not a "large scale, wholesale dealer" and was making $100 per ounce on the transactions.
So police would have been surprised when they pulled Harrington over at Sandgate on an afternoon in May, 2021 and found 3.7 kilograms of methamphetamine in "sludge form" hidden in his car.
That amount plus the quantities he had been captured dealing put the total of methamphetamine he had supplied at more than four kilograms, eight times the threshold for a charge that carries life imprisonment.
After his arrest, police searched Harrington's house at Fullerton Cove and found $275,000 in cash buried in his backyard.
Harrington told a psychologist that he had remained abstinent from drugs after his most recent release on parole until he went to a party and had "a few lines of cocaine".
He relapsed and began using and supplying drugs to feed his habit.
Judge Williams said Harrington's lengthy criminal history disentitled him to any leniency and he had been given ample opportunity to rehabilitate while serving multiple periods on parole.
He said Harrington was first jailed in 1998 and then again in 2006. He was released, caught dealing drugs again and in 2010 was jailed for a maximum of 11 years and seven months in NSW District Court.
On that occasion, 13 years ago, Judge Roy Ellis said Harrington knew the risks, but continued to supply drugs.
"Mr Harrington has been around the traps long enough to have known better and certainly long enough to have known the choice he was making," Judge Ellis said. "He could have no doubt in his own mind that if he was caught once again being involved in the supply of large quantities of illicit substances then he would receive a large whack from the court."
Judge Williams read that quote and said the comments still applied today.
But he said he hoped Harrington had finally reached a crossroads in his life and was motivated to change.
He read the sentence and Harrington swore he would never return.
When told by Judge Williams that he had said that last time, Harrington replied: "I mean it this time, 100 per cent."