Reducing Duration of Cultivation Charge

This is a case of reducing the duration of a cultivation charge filed against an illegal Vietnamese National in Victoria, Australia.

What is alleged to have occured?
The police charged our client with Cultivating a Commercial Quantity of Cannabis. The charge spans a period of three days and it was alleged that over those three days, our client was involved in cutting, harvesting, and drying cannabis. The dried weight was at nearly 40kg. The cannabis was being grown in a house that was leased by our client and his girlfriend. There were other two people who lived there and all four occupants of the house were charged. By accepting an offer to plead guilt to a three-day period, the prosecution was accepting that our client was not involved in the set up and maintenance of the crop while it was growing. The matter resolved to a plea of guilty at the committal mention stage.

What happened at court?
Kristina Kothrakis acted on the client’s behalf at the Melbourne County Court.

Our client was aged nearly 30 and was a Vietnamese National. He had come to Australia 2.5 years earlier on a student visa. His objective was to come here to work and send money home to his family. He thought that he would prosper in Australia; but unfortunately he found work difficult and was paid less than he had anticipated. He prioritised work, which resulted in his student visa being cancelled. From that time he was illegally in Australia. An opportunity arose for him to make money by allowing the house he was in to be used as a crop house. When the police conducted the search, he managed to hide in the roof cavity and escape. He was apprehended some weeks later and remanded in custody. He lied to the police in his interview.

The main objective for the client was for him to receive the lowest possible penalty so that he could return home to Vietnam to reunite with his family. As he had no legal status in Australia, he will be deported back to Vietnam at the conclusion of his sentence.

What was the result?
The client was ultimately given a straight 12-month term of imprisonment. We were able to achieve this outcome by reducing the duration of the cultivation charge from 3 months down to 3 days. Further, through negotiations, we were able to negotiate the trafficking charge to be withdrawn. It was settled on the most beneficial basis to the client, and we met our goal.

Kristina KothrakisKristina Kothrakis

Kristina has significant experience in criminal trials and also holds a degree in Science, majoring in Psychology, an invaluable area of knowledge, as many of her clients suffer from psychological disorders.

Kristina strives to achieve the best possible result for all her clients. Skilled, decisive and assertive, Kristina demonstrates dedication, care and professionalism at all times.

View Kristina Kothrakis’ profile.
DISCLAIMER: This is a real case study of an actual case from our files. Details pertaining to the client have been changed to protect their privacy. The sentence imposed and the charge have not been altered. These case studies are published to demonstrate real outcomes and give an indication of possible tariffs in Court. We do not guarantee a similar case on these charges will get the same result. Please note that we post results at our discretion, therefore while many case studies are average results, others are notable for their exceptional outcomes. PUBLISHED 24/01/2017