A Cordeaux Heights man who was bullied in high school for being overweight turned to steroids more than a decade later to "look good", Wollongong District Court was told.
Robert Nedeski was caught with nearly six kilograms of the restricted substance in September last year, stashing the illicit drugs in cupboards and filing cabinets throughout his home, the court was told yesterday.
The 31-year-old, who pleaded guilty to multiple possession charges, was sentenced in the local court to a minimum nine months behind bars but appealed the term, claiming the penalty was too severe.
Arguing for a suspended jail sentence yesterday, defence barrister Jane Healey told the court there was a significant link between Nedeski's body image issues and his steroid use.
The court heard Nedeski was taunted as a teenager with names such as "big tits", "fat" and "gigantor" and was subjected to physical abuse from other high school students.
Despite losing a large amount of weight, Nedeski was "scared of getting fat" and turned to steroids to "look good".
Upholding the man's appeal yesterday, Judge Paul Conlon told the court he could understand how Nedeski's long-standing body image had resulted in steroid use.
Judge Conlon acknowledged the steroids were potentially worth more than $350,000 on the street, according to police, but said it appeared the majority of the substances were not able to be processed into a different drug.
He told the court there was no evidence Nedeski was involved in distribution of the product and had simply purchased the drugs from China, while buying items for his online health supplements store.
The court heard Nedeski had been using steroids regularly for about six months but had abstained since his arrest.
Ms Healey said her client had no prior record. He was undergoing therapy and was unlikely to reoffend.
She told the court Nedeski took full responsibility for the offences, noting he now understood the dangers of steroid use.
Judge Conlon placed Nedeski on a 12-month suspended jail sentence.