Drugs - Heroin - Import Commercial Quantity

This table is intended to be used as a guide only. Individual cases should be read if they are to be relied upon.


Customs Act 1901 (Cth)
s.233B(1) - import prohibited drug
s.235(2)(c) - maximum penalty - life
Commercial quantity - 1.5kg
(repealed 6.12.2005)
Criminal Code (Cth)
s.307.1 - import commercial quantity
Maximum penalty - life
Commercial quantity - 1.5kg

CaseOffenceAmountPleaPriorsSentenceAppealFacts

Taha


NSW CCA
18.12.1990

Import
Possession

2.234kg

PG

10y 6m
NPP 3y

AD

Apprehended at airport. Participated in controlled delivery resulting in arrest of another person. Professional courier expecting significant reward.

Ng
(34)


NSW CCA
25.7.1991

Co-accused:
CHAN & Ors
CHEUNG

Knowingly concerned in import

38kg (pure)

PG

Hong Kong record - rape, kidnapping, burglary, drugs

12y
No NPP fixed.

AA
12y
NPP 9y

Assistance to authorities. 'Link man' between Hong Kong based sellers and Australian buyers. Involved in handling of heroin in Hong Kong & arrangements for transport of heroin into Australia.
Substantial assistance to authorities.

Kolalich
(32)

Begovic
(53)

NSW CCA
16.10.1992

Conspiracy import

2.18kg (pure)

VG

significant records.

13y
NPP 10y

AD

Principals. Financed venture, obtained heroin from Thailand and recruited. Motivated by greed.
Mitigating factors not significant.

Postiglione


(1991) 24 NSWLR 584

Knowingly involved in import

5.56kg (56% pure)

PG

Overseas record trafficking

Life

AA
12y
NPP 9y

With three co-offenders imported heroin from Pakistan. Entrepreneurial and integral to importation.

Lentze


NSW CCA
17.7.1992

Import

4,289g

PG

poor previous record - associate of criminal element in Holland

MT 6y
AT 2y

AA
7y
NPP 5y
(Parity issue with offender who picked up heroin).

Total heroin carried in two bags by A and female companion. Pressured into offence to pay off gambling debt.
High order assistance to police.

Chai


(1992) 60 A Crim R 305

Conspiracy import

27kg

VG

minor involvement in illegal gambling

24y
NPP 16y

AD

'High level principal in an international heroin dealing on a vast commercial scale'.

Dellapatrona
(48)

Duffield
(50)

(1993) 31 NSWLR 123

Conspiracy to import

3kg

VG

nil

13y 6m
NPP 10y
(assistance)

AA
9y
NPP 6y 8m

No heroin imported. Principals and heavily involved in offence. Considerable amount of planning, administration and activity over three months.

Cheung
(44)


NSW CCA
17.12.1999

Co-accused:
CHAN & Ors
NG

Knowingly concerned in importation

38kg (pure)

VG

nil

Life
NPP 21y 11m

AD

HCA Dismissed
(2001) 209 CLR 1

Senior inspector with Hong Kong Customs Service. Involved with others in importation of heroin from Hong Kong. See Chan & Ors. Regarded as a, if not the, principal.
Good character Serving sentence in foreign gaol, unlikely to see wife again because of her health.

Banthithadawit
(22)


NSW CCA
8.4.1994

Import

2.128kg

PG

nil

12y
NPP 8y

AD

Flew to Australia with heroin in suitcase. Courier. Small discount for questionable assistance.
Influenced by financial considerations.

Chan
(34)



Cheung
(31)


Tsui
(43)




Law
(41)



Chi
(34)

NSW CCA
13.4.1995

Co-accused:
CHEUNG
NG
Knowingly concerned in import
Supply

Knowingly concerned in import

Knowingly concerned in import
Supply


Knowingly concerned in import
Supply

Knowingly concerned in import
Supply

38kg (pure)

VG

one conviction













minor drug




one conviction

24y
NPP 18y
(concurrent sentence)


28y
NPP 20y


28y
NPP 20y
(concurrent sentence)


28y
NPP 20y
(concurrent sentence)

 


24y
NPP 18y
(concurrent sentence)

AA
20y
NPP 16y


24y
NPP 18y


24y
NPP 18y




24y
NPP 18y



19y
NPP 15y

Shipment from Hong Kong.
Cheung: financed enterprise, active in Hong Kong, monitored importation into Australia.
Ah Ting: link in Sydney, liaised to facilitate delivery.
Law Yat: active in Hong Kong, facilitated delivery in Sydney.
Chan and Chi: took delivery in Sydney

CHI - suffering cancer with unknown life expectancy

Che Yook
(36)


(1995) 84 A Crim R 432

Import

51.4kg (pure)

PG

26y
NPP 20y

AA
24y
NPP 18y

High level involvement. Used his company premises in Australia and Malaysia to facilitate importation. Handled heroin in Malaysia & supervised unloading in Australia.

Hollins
(49)


NSW CCA
31.5.1996

Import

3.4kg (pure)

PG

nil

7y 2m
NPP 4y 9m

AA
(parity)
6y 6m
NPP 4y

Courier arrested at airport. Co-operated with police and gave evidence against co-offender.
Creditable military record.

Wangsaimas
Vanit
Tansakun


(1995) 82 A Crim R 530 (NT SC)

(1996) 87 A Crim R 149 (NT CCA)

Import

89.1kg (pure)

PG

nil

Life
No NPP

AA
W:
NPP 22y
(assistance)

V & T:
NPP 25y

HCA Dismissed
(1997) 99 A Crim R 302

Drug brought in by boat captained by W and crewed by V and T. Not simply couriers, but were aware of the importation and had connections high up in the drug chain.

Kelleher


(1996) 89 A Crim R 215

Conspiracy to import

22 pounds / 10 kg

VG

Record.

Life
NPP 16y

AD

Recruited courier to bring heroin from Hong Kong to Australia. 7.3kg entered community. Criminality at highest level. Motivated by financial gain. Lack of contrition.

Nguyen


NSW CCA
23.9.1998

Knowingly concerned in import

10kg (pure)

VG

nil

9y
NPP 5y

AA
7y 6m
NPP 3y 9m

Drugs imported through large vases. Drove co-accused to airport, collected crates, paid charges and drove crates and co-accused to his house. Dealt with as courier. Not aware of amount or details.
Hardships in Vietnam.

Sugahara



Watanabe

NSW CCA
16.10.1998

Co-offender: TAMATSU (import less trafficable)

Import



Import

1511.2g (pure)


1511.46g (pure)

PG



PG

10y
NPP 7y


11y 6m
NPP 7y 6m

AA
9y 6m
NPP 5y

10y
NPP 6y
(assistance)

W imported drugs through packs around waist. Met someone who had offered money and plane tickets. Did not know what was in packets, but knew important. Unsuccessful controlled delivery. Dealt with as courier
S introduced to supplier by W. Same modus operandi. Separate importation. Thought drugs were cannabis.

Pang


(1999) 105 A Crim R 474

Knowingly concerned in import

2.495kg

PG

nil

6y
NPP 5y

AA
5y
NPP 3y

Courier - took delivery of drugs from importers.
Gave full statements and provided considerable assistance to police. Question of allowing for absence of remissions when setting non-parole period

Kuan
(19)


NSWSC [286]
Ireland J
31.3.1999

Co-offender:
LAW

Knowingly concerned in importation

PG

Nil

12y
NPP 7y

Involved as foot soldier - supervised at all times - Broke open consignment, removed weighed and repackaged heroin - Followed instructions and took heroin to hotel for redistribution
No financial gain - Canadian

Hashmi


NSW CCA [439]
13.8.1999

Import

1.881kg (pure)

PG

nil

5y
NPP 3y
(50% discount assistance)

AD

Courier. Pakistani national strapped dugs to body. Needed money for daughter's dowry. Controlled delivery made and evidence obtained conviction.
Co-offender - KOVACS (attempt possession prohibited import)

Nguyen


NSW CCA [441]
10.12.1999

Knowingly concerned in importation

4.775kg (pure)

VG

8y
NPP 3y 9m
(+3m PSC)

AD

Female - Courier - Supplied address and collected consignment of stereo speakers. Took them to co-offender.
Impact on 6 children

 

Post Repeal s.16G

Case Offence Amount Plea Record Sentence Appeal Facts

Liu
(26)

 

NSW CCA [378] 25.10.2005

Import commercial quantity

1,582g (pure)

PG

Nil

8y NPP 4y

AD

Female - imported drugs in body bags - Further 1,222.8g (pure) carried by male partner - Threats - Debts of co-offender Gave birth to co-offender's son in custody - delay

Law

 

NSW CCA [100] 4.4.2006

Conspiracy to import

Over 40kg

VG

Nil

Life NPP 30y

AD

With co-offenders, involved in importation of heroin in vases from Thailand - Ongoing operation involving five consignments over 2 years. Key organiser, although not principal. 'Worst case' category. (Summary of NSW and interstate cases where life sentence imposed)

Lee
(31)

 

NSW CCA [234] 3.8.2007

Import

76.3kg (pure)

VG

Minor

18y NPP 11y

Crown AA 28y NPP 19y 6m

Drugs imported in framework of two containers - set up company to arrange landing of containers, clearing through customs and delivery to warehouses Good character

Cao, Phan & Nguyen

 

[2009] NSW CCA 273 11.11.2009

Each: Conspiracy to import

C & P: 7kg N: 5kg

Each: PG

Each: Nil

C: 24y NPP 14y 6m

P: 18y NPP 11y N: 15y NPP 8y 6m

AD

C & P principals of syndicate - organised couriers to import drugs from Vietnam - involved in six importations. N's role to meet couriers at airport and to assist couriers - described as second in charge to the principals - involved in four importations. C involved P due to P's financial needs - C also involved his sisters and his brother-in-law and caused them to face lengthy prison terms - C had additional responsibilities to P. P had very little contact with persons in Vietnam and no contact with supplier - P had stronger subjective case because of her age and the needs of her children and grandchildren.

 

 

Criminal Code    

Case

Offence

Amount

Plea

Record

Sentence

Appeal

Facts

Basri
(39)

   

 

Madubuko
(44)

  

 

 

Okonkwo
(45)

 

NSWDC [398]

16.10.2009

Nicholson SC DCJ

 

Madubuko

 

NSW CCA [135]

8.6.2011

Import

 

 

Attempt possess

 

   

 

Attempt possess

1.88kg (pure)

VG

Nil

 

  

 

Nil

 

   

 

Nil

5y 3m

NPP 3y 3m

 

6y 6m

NPP 4y 2m

 

6y 6m

NPP 4y 2m

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Conviction only-

AD

B (female) recruited in Malaysia to import drugs from India in suitcase – controlled delivery made to co-offenders M and O

B – courier shepherding drugs from India – to report progress and any problems

M and O – first point of distribution in Sydney – charged with taking drugs to distributors in Bankstown – lesser criminality than B

B – difficult childhood and marriage marked by violence – assistance – good prospects of rehabilitation

M – Nigerian – positive prospects of rehabilitation

O – Nigerian – good prospects of rehabilitation

Ng
(49)

 

NSW CCA [232]
14.10.2010

Import

2.445kg (pure)

PG

Lengthy record in Singapore

11y 3m

NPP 7y 3m

AD

Citizen of Hong King – heroin concealed in toiletries and food items – courier – clearing gambling debt

Disadvantaged background – isolation in custody

Zhang

 

NSW CCA [233]
26.10.2011

Import

1527.6g (pure)

108.6g (M)

PG

Offence committed 18m after release to parole for imp 3.3kg heroin

14y

NPP 9y

AD

Arranged for heroin and methylamphetamine to be imported from China to post box in Australia – voluntarily disclosed import of M after caught with heroin

A.Tran
(20)

 

 

 

P.Tran
(20)

 

 

 

Nguyen
(20)

 

   

NSWCCA [136]
7.6.2013

Attempt possess

 

 

Import

 

 

Import
6.25kg(pure)

PG

(25%)
Nil

4y 6m

NPP 2y 9m

 

7y 6m

NPP 4y 6m

 

9y

NPP 5y 6m
Crown AD

Drugs imported into Australia concealed in boxes marked statues, vase and bathroom accessories – N paid to arrange delivery – drugs delivered to P.Tran’s house – all involved in unpacking – all motivated by financial gain

Nguyen – major role – remorse – drug addiction – good prospects of rehabilitation

P.Tran – lesser but still significant role – cocaine user – lacked knowledge about nature and amount of drug – good prospects of rehabilitation

A.Tran – remorse – good character – cocaine dependent – good prospects of rehabilitation