A Queensland man is expected to spend twelve months in prison for his part in a $20 million Cannabis operation near Mackay, Queensland.
Anthony Lindsay, 38, was arrested alongside several family members back in May 2019, after Queensland police raided a 204-hectare property in Calen, 55km north of Mackay. During the raid, officers discovered over 8,089 plants across four different parts of the property. The estimated value of the crops was $20 million.
Although Lindsay and several others were arrested as a result of the raid, Queensland Police allege the owner of the land was unaware his property was being used.
The property was discovered using Google Maps and was the subject of a major police operation in 2019. The operation included undercover officers, targeted searches and telephone intercepts.
Lindsay’s lawyer, defence barrister Paul Rutledge, spoke to the court earlier this week, defending his client’s actions.
It was a close-knit small family group supplying to the local area. We’re not dealing with Italian organised crime… It’s still serious, but it’s not in that sort of category.
A miner and father of three, Lindsay became involved in the operation in November 2018 for financial reasons. Mr Rutledge told the court that “the mine sites took him away from his family, and from his perspective, he did not seem to be getting ahead financially.”
After facing the Mackay District Court earlier this week, Anthony Lindsay pled guilty to charges of Producing and Trafficking drugs.
Judge Paul Smith sentenced Lindsay to six and a half years in prison. Lindsay will be eligible for parole in March next year, as he has been incarcerated since May 2019. Lindsay was previously convicted of producing cannabis in 2013.
I should have known it was a stupid thing to do. I really regret everything I’ve done, I’ve hurt my family, I’ve hurt myself and my friends.
Lindsay’s family members are due to face court on similar charges of Producing and Trafficking drugs in the next couple of months.
Just a week before Lindsay’s conviction, an $800k cannabis operation was raided near Brisbane, despite the growing support of legalizing Cannabis in Queensland.