A PERTH court heard that a Mandurah man helped organise the “murder flight” that would see his childhood friend from Liverpool bring eight balloons of cocaine into the country.
Jacob Dylan Molloy (26) was sentenced last week to five years in prison for the importation of cocaine in a marketable quantity into Australia.
Molloy, who was a business partner at Mandurah’s Heritage Gastropub restaurant at the time of the importation, pleaded not guilty to the charge in March, 2015.
However, a unanimous verdict of guilty was returned following a trial by jury on December 14, last year.
Court transcripts revealed that customs officers at Perth airport found Molloy’s friend Neil McParland (23) was concealing cocaine internally on March 27, 2015.
McParland was taken to St John of God hospital, where he passed six different-coloured balloons of cocaine. He passed another two at Royal Perth Hospital.
Inside the balloons were more than 110 grams of cocaine, of more than 70 per cent purity, with a street value of $156,000.
The Australian Federal Police received permission from a Federal Court judge on February 19, 2015, to intercept phone calls and text messages on Molloy’s mobile phone.
During these calls, Molloy, along with two other associates from Liverpool, organised transport and a hotel room for McParland once he reached Australia.
He was heard describing the flight McParland would take through Dubai with the drugs concealed internally as the “murder flight”.
This was in reference to the fact that importation of drugs carries the death penalty in Dubai. Also, if the balloons had exploded during the flight it could have also resulted in McParland’s death.
Molloy was caught on CCTV at the Sebel Hotel distributing envelopes of cash on the day McParland flew into Perth.
The Crown case against Molloy was that he intended to distribute the drug within the community upon McParland’s arrival.
During sentencing, lawyers for the accused tried to argue that Molloy would not have benefited financially from the arrangement and that he did not know the quantity being imported. Judge Philip Eaton disagreed and said it was inconceivable that Molloy did what he did as a favour to his friends.
He described Molloy as unremorseful and said he refused to admit guilt.
For this reason he was sentenced to five years and four months in prison, despite McParland receiving three years and three months for his role in the crime.
The sentence was backdated to December last year
He will be eligible for parole in 2019.