Criminal Law News & Current Affairs

By Ben Aulich & Associates Ben Aulich & Associates


Man pleads guilty to importing commercial quantity of drugs to front door

A Canberra man has pleaded guilty to importing a commercial quantity of drugs to his front door.

Christopher Walter Thorn, 39, opened his door to what he thought was a delivery man on 15 October last year.

Thorn signed for a package of five kilograms of GBL, a liquid which is naturally converted by the body to the illicit drug GHB, or fantasy.

He didn’t know it, but the delivery man was an undercover member of the Australian Federal Police.

Police had been alerted to the drug importation by customs, who had intercepted a FedEx package being sent from Shanghai, China, to Thorn’s front door in Phillip.

The home was later raided, and Thorn made several admissions to police, according to court documents.

He told police he used internet cafes to order the GBL via email, using the business name “Be Clean Solutions” and paying using Western Union funds transfer.

Thorn told police the drugs were for personal use, and he had been consuming GBL daily for 12 years.

During the search, police also found eight clip seal bags containing the drug ice, and two smoking implements.

Thorn was charged, taken to court and held in custody.

Another two packages were intercepted while he was behind bars, one containing 18 kilograms, and the other 1.9 kilograms.

One was destined for his home address and the other to a post office box in his name.

The total weight of GBL imported was 25 kilograms, far above the one kilogram that the law considers to be a commercial quantity.

Thorn has since been bailed and went to rehabilitation to try to overcome his drug addiction.

He appeared in the ACT Magistrates Court on Thursday, represented by solicitor Peter Woodhouse, and pleaded guilty to one charge of importing a border controlled drug.

The charge carries a maximum penalty of one year imprisonment.

Magistrate Bernadette Boss committed Thorn for sentence in the ACT Supreme Court, and he will appear later this month.

Credit: Christopher Knaus, Canberra Times