SHE once controlled a multi-million dollar North East Victorian drug syndicate, using intimidation, violence and threats to grow her empire.
The downfall of Wangaratta ice queen Jessica Fogarty was completed on Tuesday, the 26-year-old left crying and shaking as she was jailed.
Fogarty sat at the top of a syndicate of dealers who trafficked methamphetamine and other drugs throughout the city and surrounding towns from 2010 to 2014.
Gun thefts increased in the region during her reign and firearms were often traded for ice or to settle debts.
The trade was worth millions but in the end, it was all for nothing.
Judge Frank Gucciardo noted for someone who had built an “empire”, Fogarty was “left with precious little at the end of the day”.
There would be no long-term benefit from her years of trafficking, he added.
The judge said Fogarty had been driven by greed and had exploited drug addicts and impacted the “very fabric of the community” in Wangaratta and surrounds.
Fogarty sourced ice in large quantities – often six to eight ounces per week – and was herself using up to 3.5 grams a day before her arrest.
A psychologist could not rule out her own use had caused brain damage.
The Wangaratta County Court heard Fogarty had paid more than $1.3 million for 170-plus ounces of ice from a co-accused over 18 months.
Fogarty shook in the dock as details of her crimes were read out and at one stage hunched over looking highly distressed.
She had given details to police of the syndicate after her arrest in September 2014, leading to her being placed in lockdown while on remand following media reports of her co-operation with police.
The court heard the co-operation had placed her family at risk.
But it also led to a significant discount on her prison sentence.
Judge Gucciardo said he would have considered a 14½ -year jail term if she had not pleaded guilty.
Coupled with the police co-operation, she was sentenced to seven years with a non-parole period of 4½ years, with about 18 months already served.