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Blango v The Queen [2018] VSCA 210

appeal against sentence — attempting to possess commercial quantity of unlawfully imported border controlled drug offence contrary to ss 11.1(1), 307.5(1) of Commonwealth Criminal Code, attempting to possess marketable quantity of contrary to ss 11.1(1), 307.6(1) of Commonwealth Criminal Code — first two charges rolled up charges representing 33 and 4 separate instances of criminality — offences related to attempted possession of 55.9578 kilograms of ice, 725.3 grams of heroin and 28.89 grams of cocaine — offender member of criminal syndicate that imported and distributed border controlled drugs — offender’s role to take possession of large numbers of consignments that arrived in Australia — original sentence imposed 16 years’ and 6 months imprisonment with 12 year and 6 month non-parole period — objective seriousness instinctive synthesis — sentence not manifestly excessive — offender held senior and trusted managerial role in criminal syndicate operating large and lucrative drug trade — offender aware that large quantities of drugs were being imported — offender made consistent and concerted efforts to take possession of drugs, even after informed that customs officers delayed delivery of consignment — single consignments cannot be isolated from conduct as a whole — sentence imposed well within range of sentences available due to objective gravity of offending and high moral culpability — antecedents — s16A(2)(m) — sentencing judge gave appropriate weight to offender’s traumatic childhood and acknowledged that it would have impaired capacity for reasoned decision-making — offender intelligent individual who chose to commit offences for reason of profit and greed rather than poverty, deprivation or ill-health — offender had extensive criminal history which demonstrates persistent disregard for law and rights of other citizens — criminal history relevant to weight given to mitigating circumstances and specific deterrence — breached previous CBO and CCO orders and failed to take advantage of opportunities for rehabilitation afforded — guilty plea — s 16A(2)(g) — s 6AAA declaration — offender’s submission that s 6AAA declaration evidences that total effective sentence manifestly excessive rejected — well established that, due to artificiality in formulation of s 6AAA declaration and fact that instinctive synthesis involves balancing sentencing considerations, such a declaration generally not to be taken to exhibit error — sentencing judge gave appropriate weight to offender’s guilty plea — individual sentences for three charges and orders for cumulation not manifestly excessive — total effective sentence of severity appropriate in all the circumstances — appeal dismissed
The CSD acknowledges Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples as First Australians and recognises their culture, history, diversity and their deep connection to the land. We acknowledge that we are on the land of the traditional owners and pay respects to Elders past and present.

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