How girlfriend smuggled drugs into prison

A court has heard the creative way a prisoner’s girlfriend smuggled methamphetamine drugs into a South Australian jail.

A South Australian woman who smuggled methamphetamine into a prison hid the drugs inside a hair scrunchie, a court has heard.

Melissa Corinne Riley, 27, delivered 3.5 grams of the substance to her boyfriend, who was an inmate Cadell Training Centre, on March 4, 2018.

The training centre is a minimum-security prison in the Riverland, 180 kilometres northeast of Adelaide.

Riley, of Mannum, pleaded guilty to delivering a prohibited item to a prisoner and was handed a three-month suspended sentence in the Adelaide Magistrates Court this week.

Magistrate Kym Millard said her boyfriend was searched and found with the drugs “as a consequence of suspicions raised”.

“He gave an explanation subsequently, but it wasn’t accepted,” he said.

“You pleaded guilty and accepted that you did in fact bring in the drug amphetamine in wrapped in a scrunchie.”

Magistrate Millard accepted that Riley had been invited to carry in the drugs.

But he said it was not clear whether she felt she was under any obligation or pressure to do so.

Riley’s case had been delayed for several months to allow her to participate in a drug rehabilitation program.

Magistrate Millard said Riley had a drug problem at the time she committed the crime, but she had since endeavoured to turn her life around.

“In my view, notwithstanding the absence of prior criminal history, the only appropriate penalty for your actions on this day must be a term of imprisonment,” he said.

“But I also accept that you’ve demonstrated that you’re making a good effort to rehabilitate and there is significant prospect that you won’t return to behaviour of this nature.”

He suspended the term on a bond to be of good behaviour for the next 18 months, but had a final warning for Riley before she was free to go.

“It’s important that you continue your progress,” he said.

“(Methamphetamine) is a drug which is going to lead you inevitably back into the criminal justice system … if you can’t maintain your current discipline.”

Riley covered her face and made no comment as she left court with a supporter.

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