Drug Importation Law – Import a commercial quantity of border controlled drug, namely methamphetamine
JURISDICTION: In the District Court of New South Wales
REPRESENTED BY: Ms Nicole Carroll of Counsel, instructed by Criminal Lawyers Sydney George Sten & Co.
SUBJECT: Criminal Law – Drug importation – Import a commercial quantity of border controlled drug, namely methamphetamine – plea of not guilty – not aware of the existence of border controlled substance – found not guilty.
The defendant, a Chinese national, together with a number of other individuals, travelled aboard a fishing boat from China to Australia via Taiwan. A couple of weeks later, the fishing boat stopped off the east coast of Australia. The defendants transferred tightly closed barrels from the fishing boat onto a smaller boat and subsequently travelled to shore. Upon arriving at shore, they were met by a man and removed the barrels from the small boat onto shore. The Australian Federal Police had surveillance on this operation and arrested all of the individuals. AFP forensic examinations of the barrels revealed that they contained just over 65 kilograms of a substance known as methamphetamine. The defendant instructed that he was unaware that border controlled substances were being transported to Australia. The defendant had been contracted as a fisherman for this trip. A couple of days into the trip the workers on the boat were told that they would be sailing to Australia to transport battery chemicals.
Counsel for the defence argued that the defendant was not aware of the existence of the border controlled substances aboard the boat.
A jury of 12 found that the defendant was not guilty and he was subsequently released and returned to China.
The maximum penalty for this offence is life imprisonment, 7,500 penalty units or both.
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