Young mum’s crime spree ends in court

AN ILLICIT drug supplier, shoplifter and online fraudster has been placed on probation after her appearance in the Warwick Magistrates Court this week.

Chelsea Scarlett Twidale appeared before Magistrate Graham Lee on Wednesday and pleaded guilty to two drug offences, a shoplifting offence and a charge of fraud relating to the bogus sale of a mobile phone.

Police Prosecutor Sergeant Ken Wiggan told the court that Twidale, 21, arranged via text messages to supply a quantity of cannabis and a quantity of amphetamines to a pair of acquaintances in Warwick in early March.

The court also heard that Twidale had been at Best and Less at Clifford Gardens in Toowoomba where she was intercepted by store security after removing a quantity of female clothing.

Twidale also came unstuck when she 'bought' a mobile phone which had been advertised for sale on Facebook, arranging to meet with the vendor at a local service station last November.

She produced an online banking receipt which purported to prove that she had deposited the $350 asking price into the vendor's nominated bank account, and went home with the phone.

Sadly for the vendor, it turned out that Twidale had printed out the receipt before completing the online banking transaction by hitting the "confirm" button as required.

When they realised they had been dudded, the upset vendor reported Twidale to the police after blocking her on Facebook, which Twidale reciprocated.

Defence counsel for Twidale, duty solicitor Phillip Crook, told the court that Twidale, who has a child aged two and a half years, was unemployed and received a Centrelink payment of about $500 a week.

He told the court his client had "genuinely believed" that she had completed the banking transaction related to the phone.

Mr Crook also said Twidale had been short of money when she had stolen the clothing from Best and Less, and that the drug supplying had been done out of "goodwill" towards people she knew and that she had made no profit from the conduct.

He also said Twidale had previously been an intravenous drug user but had been clean for the last 10 months at the urging of her partner.

As well as being given six months probation, Twidale was ordered to pay $350 in restitution to the owner of the phone and will be required to comply with random drug testing while on probation.

No conviction was recorded against her.

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