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Solhi v The Queen [2022] NSWCCA 162

The offender was sentenced following pleas of guilty to 1 count of importing a commercial quantity of a border-controlled drug contrary to s 307.1(1) of the Commonwealth Criminal Code and 1 count of trafficking in controlled drugs contrary to s 302.4(1) of the Criminal Code. Original sentence imposed 7 years and 6 months imprisonment. Offender appealed on the ground that the original sentence was manifestly excessive.

Manifest Excess: Offender submitted that their subjective case warranted a lesser sentence. Offender sought to distinguish this case from more serious offending by virtue of the fact that offender was not a member of a sophisticated criminal syndicate but acted alone. That characterisation does not necessarily assist offender. Offender dealt with the packages and was to receive, collect and manage storage of the consignments. Offender stood to gain a significant portion of the profits. Sentencing judge considered offender’s subjective case, including the absence of a prior criminal record in Australia, the utilitarian value of the plea of guilty, and that the plea demonstrated some indication of remorse. Sentencing judge had regard to offender’s age, addressed their isolation in custody, and considered the effect on offender’s family. Each of the matters relied upon by offender was addressed and taken into account. Sentencing judge gave appropriate weight to offender’s subjective case. The objective seriousness of the offences, notwithstanding the subjective case, warranted a lengthy term of full-time imprisonment. The original sentence is not manifestly excessive in the sense of being unreasonable or plainly unjust.

Leave to appeal granted. 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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