Man loses appeal over cannabis plot

A man who tried to import 250 kilograms of cannabis into Australia from Papua New Guinea has lost an appeal against his jail sentence.  Alexander Stuart McMurray pleaded guilty in May in the Supreme Court in Brisbane to conspiring to import a marketable quantity of a border-controlled drug between September and December 2009.  During that time McMurray, who was 27 at the time, joined three co-offenders in hatching a plan to import cannabis into Australia from PNG on a boat.  McMurray’s role in the scheme was to provide some funding and to distribute some of the cannabis in Australia.

However, the scheme unravelled when they revealed details of the planned importation to an undercover police officer and the four co-conspirators were arrested.  McMurray was sentenced to three-and-a-half years’ jail, with a non-parole period of 15 months.  Two of the other offenders received the same sentence, while the fourth was sentenced to four years’ jail.  McMurray took his case last month to the Court of Appeal in Brisbane, where he argued the sentence was manifestly excessive.  Representing himself, McMurray said that he had been far less involved in the scheme than his co-offenders and so deserved a substantially lower sentence.  In a written judgment handed down on Tuesday, the Court of Appeal rejected McMurray’s submissions, ruling his provision of finance had been an integral part of the scheme and warranted the sentence he received.

via : NineMSN

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