A WOMAN who claimed she was forced to try to smuggle drugs into a jail or risk having her house burnt down has been convicted.
Shannon Coffey, 24, of Booth Street, Narromine, appeared before magistrate Catherine Follent in Bathurst Local Court, where she was convicted of supplying a prohibited drug (smaller or equal to a small quantity).
Police facts tendered to the court told how Coffey knowingly took part in the supply of buprenorphine on August 25.
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The court heard the accused was attending Wellington Correctional Centre as a visitor when the K9 unit at the jail saw Coffey in the car park and approached her.
The correctional officers asked Coffey and others with her if they had anything on them which they shouldn't.
The dogs walked around Coffey and showed signs to the handler they could smell prohibited drugs.
Again, the officers asked Coffey if she had anything on her that she shouldn't and she produced a white balloon from the left side of her bra, according to the police facts.
Corrective officers took the balloon from Coffey and searched her, detained her and called police.
Police arrived soon after and spoke with Coffey.
She told them she was given the package by another person to bring into the jail and pass on to an inmate, according to the police facts for the matter.
She said she was given the drugs three days ago by post and the drugs came with a threatening letter that her house would be burnt down if she didn't take them in.
The drugs were 61 strips of what police believed to be buprenorphine.
Coffey's solicitor Mr Gration told the court his client was upfront with police officers.
He said she had recently moved to Bathurst to get away from influences where she was living.
He said she was bail refused on another matter which occurred in Dubbo, but said she had nothing on her record since 2018.
The court also heard Coffey was a single mother who had the support of her own mother, who is living in Bathurst.
Mr Gration said his client did not have problems with substance abuse, but did have depression and anxiety, and said the offending conduct did not cross the Section 5 threshold.
Coffey was convicted and placed on an 18-month Community Corrections Order.