A Kirrawee father-of-one who sold $9,000 worth of ecstasy to a police mole in the carpark of Albion Park McDonald's was acting out of "desperation" to repay his own burgeoning cocaine debt, court has heard.
Keiran Scott Daniels, 28, faced Wollongong District Court for sentencing on Thursday where he expressed remorse and shame over his involvement in the deal on October 17 2019, telling the court he'd let his young family down in the worst possible way.
"The offence I committed has impacted my wife and son and this hurts me," he said, revealing his wife had thrown him out of the house when she discovered cocaine in his pockets.
"She told me she didn't want drugs around our son and I was forced into moving in with my friend in Wollongong. The separation hurt me and I started abusing cocaine most days to destress.
"I've been a bad role model for my son and now he has had to grow up with his dad in jail."
The court heard Daniels had grown up in an abusive household and turned to cocaine use at 18 to escape life's stresses.
Despite this, he developed a successful career in the landscaping and excavation industry until his boss busted him using drugs in September 2019 and he was fired.
"I then went into a downward spiral," he said.
The court heard Daniels was indebted to his cocaine dealer when a mutual friend put him in touch with fellow dealer Jarrod Turk, who had a buyer interested in purchasing five ounces (140g) of ecstasy.
Daniels approached his upline supplier and secured the drugs "on tick" (without payment), with the promise he stood to make $1,000 from the sale.
Daniels told the court on Thursday he was "desperate for money" at the time.
"I was stupid," he said.
Both Daniels and Turk were arrested after the exchange was made in the back of the customer's car.
Daniels was charged with a commercial drug supply offence, to which he subsequently pleaded guilty.
In court on Thursday, Judge Andrew Haesler accepted Daniels had "hit rock bottom" when he committed the crime.
"He played his role in organised criminal activity and did so without any regard to the harm drug supply causes to community," he said.
However, Judge Haesler also noted Daniels had used his time on remand wisely.
"Everything he's done since [his arrest[ has been to pick himself up," he said.
"He has used his time in jail to his advantage. His letter of apology appears heartfelt and genuine."
Judge Haesler sentenced Daniels to 2 years' jail, with a non-parole period of 14 months.
With time served, he will be released on parole just before Christmas this year.