29 Mar 2021
Racehorse owner Damion Flower has pleaded guilty to two charges for his role in a syndicate smuggling commercial quantities of cocaine through Sydney Airport.
Flower, the 48-year-old part owner of champion stallion Snitzel, was arrested in May 2019 along with Qantas baggage handler To’or’o “John” Mafiti for importing cocaine from South Africa hidden in the holds of commercial flights.
Flower had maintained his innocence until, just as his trial was due to begin, the matter was resolved with prosecutors, and he pleaded guilty to one count of importing a commercial quantity of prohibited drugs and one count of dealing with the proceeds of crime.
The prominent racing identity, who worked as a baggage handler between 2000 and 2004, had previously faced three counts of importing a commercial quantity of prohibited drugs and two counts of dealing with the proceeds of crime.
Arraigned in the Downing Centre District Court on Monday, wearing a black suit and tie, Flower entered a guilty plea on the charge of importing commercial quantities of cocaine between June 2016 and May 2019.
He also entered a guilty plea on one count of dealing with the proceeds of crime equal to or greater than $100,000 in May of that year in Moorebank, where the Flower family lived.
The charges are related to 12 shipments of cocaine that brought about 225 kilograms of the illicit drug into Sydney.
The court heard on Monday that Flower, who has been in custody since his arrest, had signed an agreed set of facts in regard to his offending.
By Fergus Hunter, The Sydney Morning Herald, 29 March 2021
Read more at The Sydney Morning Herald
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