An Adelaide man who was arrested after leaving more than 7 kilograms of drugs at a hotel front counter for staff to look after has received a suspended sentence because of the “exceptional circumstances” around the case.
- Con Psarras left 7.68kg of drugs in a bag at a hotel front counter
- He refused to give his credit card details and staff called police
- He has been given a two-year suspended sentence
Con Psarras, 31, pleaded guilty in Adelaide’s District Court to trafficking a large commercial quantity of a controlled drug and was sentenced on Friday.
The court was told Psarras left a sports bag with 7.68kg of the drug fantasy in it at the front counter of the Findon Hotel on May 14 last year.
He asked the staff to look after it while he found money for the booking.
Judge Paul Cuthbertson said the employee and the hotel’s assistant manager could see it contained a white plastic container with a “viscous liquid-like drug” in it.
Psarras returned at 9:00pm to book in but refused to give his credit card details and the staff called police.
‘Exceptional circumstances’ around case
While the maximum penalty for the charge is a fine of $1 million and imprisonment for life, Judge Cuthbertson said it was possible to hand out a suspended sentence for the crime in “exceptional circumstances”.
He described the offending as “unusual in the extreme” and “stupid behaviour”.
“Although the quantity of the drug is such that it comes within the offence of trafficking in a large commercial quantity, the circumstances of the offending are unusual in that [it is] far from suggesting a highly professional, serious and organised crime offence,” Judge Cuthbertson said.
“It bears all the appearances of being extremely amateur and committed under circumstances suggesting the offender may well have been under the influence of some drugs at the time due to the certain risk he was running of putting drugs into the custody of the hotel and thus risking a serious criminal charge.”
He also said Psarras had put in effort in rehabilitation and had had success with it.
He also had strong family support.
The judge said Psarras turned to the offending after becoming involved with an “inappropriate group of acquaintances” after having to quit his job at his father’s concreting business after developing an allergy to concrete.
Considering a 20 per cent discount for pleading guilty and the five months he had already spent in custody, Judge Cuthbertson fixed a non-parole period of two years.
He suspended the sentence in exchange for a $100 bond, along with strict conditions, including drug testing and 200 hours of community service.