A man has been sentenced to 12 months’ jail for manufacturing pen pistols and trafficking heroin and methamphetamine or ice.
Nghia Lam, 37, who was living at Altona North, Werribee and Williamstown at the time of offending, pleaded guilty in the County Court to five charges relating to drugs and firearms.
The court heard that in 2015 and 2016, police conducted a number of operations targeting alleged trafficking of heroin and ice by Lam.
Lam unknowingly sold the drugs to undercover police, before mentioning to one operative that he was involved in manufacturing pen pistols of various calibres which he sold for $200 each.
In March last year, Lam was arrested and police executed search warrants at his Altona North home and previous address in Williamstown.
The next month, police visited a caravan park where Lam had lived and recovered two drills used to manufacture firearms from his associate.
Judge Sandra Davis sentenced Lam to 12 months’ imprisonment and a two-year community corrections order, with 386 days on remand already served.
He was fined $1500 on summary charges of possessing cartridge and ammunition without a licence and possessing a large dagger.
Judge Davis said there was an interest in keeping Lam drug-free within the community so that he could stabilise his personal and financial position and play a role in the lives of his three children.
The court heard Lam came to Australia from Vietnam at age two and left school in year 11 to support his family by drug dealing. He was shot through the neck at age 16.
The court heard that Lam and a former partner had used heroin and ice daily and Lam made pen pistols to support themselves.
Two months before Lam’s arrest, they had started seeing a psychiatrist and were placed on a methadone program.