'Catch me if you can' criminal jailed
ABANDONED by his mother at age two and by his scientologist father at age six, Dean Jason Elberg went into care and turned to drugs as a teenager.
But Justice Peter Lyons said every judicial system member who had dealt with Elberg since his "extensive" criminal history began in 1991 probably had heard the same sob story.
He was sentencing the now 41-year-old for possessing iodine and hypophosphorous acid, key ingredients in producing methamphetamine, and for producing the drug after police found a dismantled clandestine laboratory scattered through a Gold Coast home.
Police also found traces of methamphetamines on items in the house.
Brisbane Supreme Court heard on Tuesday how Elberg had been in and out of jail 13 times since he was 20, the longest period being three years for home invasions.
He was labelled by the media the "catch me if you can" criminal when he repeatedly evaded police in 2007.
He had "aspirations" to work in the mining industry, initially looking at Gladstone upon release.
But he discovered it was too expensive to live in Gladstone and now plans to move to Western Australia for work and to distance himself from South-East Queensland where his problems have been.
Justice Lyons sentenced him to 2.5 years in jail, suspended for five years.
He took into account 182 days already spent behind bars which could not be officially declared as time served.
"People who get involved with drugs become addicted, with devastating effects on their lives," he said.
"You have been a drug addict for many years and you have suffered from that addiction."