Australia has some well organised criminal structures supplying the vast majority of the black market. And then there’s these folks. The not so organised, the not so smart, and well, just a little bit dumb.
Here are five extraordinary cannabis-related offences and situations we found throughout 2020 so far.
It’s me’ mam!
Back in July, Victorian police arrested a 29-year-old man for cannabis cultivation in his mother’s home. Instead of staying silent, the man promptly asked his mother to take responsibility for his crimes.
This quickly backfired.
Police discovered the wannabe-instagram star was using the handle ‘Bees Knees Genetics’ to market his marijuana, giving his crop names like ‘cream berry cake’.
He was also putting the professionalism in pot-dealing, with police finding a detailed list of clients in his mothers home. The list included the names and tracking numbers of seeds he sent nationwide.
Police also discovered advertising material that identified the man, including business cards.
A five-year-old girl became Australia’s youngest dope-dobber, after accidentally exposing her 30-year-old mother’s secret cannabis crop.
The girl prank called triple-0 in March this year, with policing arriving at her Elm Street address at 12.10 am. After no one answered the door, officers noticed a light coming from the garage.
When police entered the garage, they were greeted with a makeshift hydroponics setup and 15 fully-grown cannabis plants. Busted!
Sergent Peter Northey told the Illawarra Mercury that the incident is highly unusual, stating:
In my 18 years of policing, this is the first time that this sort of circumstance has happened.
The puzzling plants
46-year-old Thi Lang Bui and 56-year-old Phong Truong are currently facing court in Melbourne, after allegedly growing 1,047 cannabis plants in a Sunshine warehouse.
Both Bui and Truong are claiming they had no idea they were growing cannabis. Bui told the Police:
It’s growing plants. I don’t know what they are.
Third times a charm?
37-year old grandmother Anthea Lalara has been sentenced to 18 months in prison, after being caught trafficking cannabis from Darwin to Groote Eylandt for the second time in a row.
Lalara was charged with the same crime in back 2015, after boarding a flight with practically identical pot packages.
In court, she argued the cannabis was for her own personal consumption. Unfortunately, the packages of cannabis were labelled with recipients names.
A man, his stolen petting-zoo piglets and some pot
Just two weeks ago, Police arrested a 39-year-old Owen Van Duren in Canberra. Duren had allegedly stolen four piglets from the Yarralumla Play Station petting zoo.
Police discovered the piglets chilling in his backyard, surrounded by cannabis plants.
Van Duren is no stranger to public attention. Last year, Van Duren and his ex-special forces brother made the news after they stole a luxury yacht in Thailand and sailed it to Australia. He is also wanted for car theft in Darwin.
Thankfully, Yarralumla Play Station received the piglets back unharmed. Duran avoided cannabis charges under the ACT’s new legal-possession scheme. You can read all about there here.