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R v Derley; R v Piras [2020] NSWDC 28

sentence — co-offender 1 charged with conspiracy to import a commercial quantity of methamphetamine offence contrary to s 11.5(1) — co-offender 2 charged with aid, abet, counsel or procure the committal of attempted importation of a commercial quantity of methamphetamine offence contrary to ss 307.1(1) and 11.1(1) of Commonwealth Criminal Code — offences relate to 249.1kg of pure methamphetamine — nature and circumstances of the offence — s 16A(2)(a) — Court must consider actual activities of offenders  involved in drug importation in assessing their criminal culpability rather than categorising offender’s role — co-offender 1 was one level in the pyramid above co-offender 2, taking directions or assignments from 3rd conspirator — co-offender 1 characterisation of “low-level manager” but nothing to suggest co-offender 1 had any decision making or similar executive function — co-offender 2 at bottom of pyramid, only initiative to recruit co-offender 1 — co-offender 2 a “worker” or gopher — guilty plea — s 16A(2)(g) — utilitarian value is great as undercover officers did not need to give evidence which enhanced protection of their identities — 25% discount for both offenders’ guilty pleas — antecedents — s 16A(2)(m) — age — s 16A(2)(m) — character — s 16A(2)(m) — co-offender 1 has extensive criminal history which does not aggravate current criminality but means Court cannot grant any leniency for current offending — as co-offender 1 has lengthy experience of serving prison sentences, effect of being taken into custody at age of 64 is not the same as it would be for a man of similar age who has no custodial experience — co-offender 1’s previous addiction played no part in their motivation to participate in current crime — both co-offender 1 and 2 had gambling problem — co-offender 2 has no prior criminal convictions, prior good character and entitled to be dealt with leniently — co-offender 2 depressed by increasing debt and marital strain but secondary to voluntarily acquired gambling addiction — explains offending but does not mitigate it — contrition — s 16A(2)(f)(ii) — rehabilitation — s 16A(2)(n) — co-offender 1 has true remorse and contrition for their crime as aware action damaged relationship with wife, may damage relationship with children and bonding with grandchildren, and aware and regretful of damage actions could have caused to community — previous incarcerations led to co-offender 1’s release from drug and alcohol addictions, so expect this incarceration and consequences will allow co-offender 1 to escape gambling addition — concern for disabled wife appears genuine — do not see co-offender 1 as being further threat to society, at risk of further offending or exposing themselves to risk of being locked up in gaol — prospect of not re-offending, prospect of rehabilitation, is very good — co-offender 2’s statements together with what offender is doing to rehabilitate themselves, assisting others, indicates true victim empathy, real contrition and real remorse — prospect for co-offender 2’s rehabilitation are excellent — specific deterrence — s 16A(2)(j) — general deterrence — s 16A(2)(ja) — specific deterrence not an issue, but general deterrence remains — community must know those who seek to import large quantities of illegal drugs will suffer punishment — sentence — sentence imposed 9 years imprisonment with a 6 year non-parole period on co-offender 1 — but for guilty plea, would have imposed 12 years imprisonment — sentence imposed 3 years and 9 months imprisonment with a 2 year and 6 month non-parole period imposed on co-offender 2 — but for guilty plea, would have imposed 5 years imprisonment
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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