Burglar on bender stole $10,000 of Guru's dope

LYN HUMPHREYS
Last updated 05:00 10/01/2014

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A self-confessed addict intent on a bender broke into New Plymouth's Guru Gardener Store and stole $10,000 of synthetic cannabis.

In the New Plymouth District Court yesterday Jonathan Bruce Willan, 38, landscaper, pleaded guilty to the burglary on November 20.

About 10pm on the day Willan armed himself with a steel pinch-bar and smashed a front window pane to get in, the police summary says. He and took 400 2.5 gram packets of Tai High synthetic cannabis. The $25 packets were together valued at $10,000.

When police interviewed Willan he admitted the burglary saying he was on a "drug and alcohol bender" at the time.

Willan's lawyer Andrew Laurenson said his client had a chronic problem with synthetic cannabis. He smoked most of the drugs he stole and gave some away.

Last year he completed Auckland's Capri drug and alcohol rehabilitation programme and was again back in touch with the drug and alcohol service. His addictions had cost him his wife and child.

Mr Laurenson said Willan targeted the Guru Gardener, which he had "issues with and was getting back at them". He deeply regretted his actions.

Judge Allan Roberts called for a pre-sentence report to find out more about Willan's application to rehabilitation.

He declined to order reparation for Guru Gardener, saying "if these people want to sell this garbage they can take their chances".

Willan was remanded to appear for sentence on February 14.

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