Euthanasia activist Susan Austen fined $7500 for importing suicide drug

Euthanasia activist Susan Austen has been sentenced to pay $7500 on two charges of importing the Class C euthanasia drug pentobarbitone.

Austen was fined $2500 for importation of the drug by mail and $5000 for importation of the drug into New Zealand on her person.

Justice Susan Thomas said the seriousness of the offending was low to moderate as she delivered the sentence on Friday morning in the Wellington High Court.

Austen's lawyer Donald Stevens had asked for a discharge without conviction.

In February, a jury found Austen not guilty of aiding the suicide of 77-year-old Annemarie Treadwell.

It acquitted the 67-year-old former teacher on one charge of importing a Class C drug, but guilty on two charges of the same offence.

Austen is the Wellington coordinator of EXIT International, a pro-assisted dying group that Ms Treadwell was a member of.

Pentobarbitone is a Class C drug under New Zealand law, although veterinarians can lawfully use it to euthanise animals.