Comments Off on Methamphetamine kingpin William Barker ran million-dollar drug empire using horse racing codes on the Sunshine Coast

A SUNSHINE Coast drug syndicate kingpin ran his burgeoning million dollar empire peddling “ice’’ during meetings over a cup of tea and a pie with “high level’’ drug dealers, a court has been told.

The Brisbane Supreme Court was told grandfather William Fredricis Barker earned an estimated $1.8 million trafficking methamphetamine to four high level drug trafficking operatives over a two-year period.

Prosecutors said police secretly listened to Barker arrange drug deals over a pie or a “cuppa’’ after taking coded drug orders from operatives using horse racing parlance.

The court was told police found almost $1 million is cash made via illicit drug sales buried or hidden in shopping bags, plastic drums or wrapped in duct tape during a raid on Barker’s Mooloolah Valley home, 90km north of Brisbane.

Barker, 50, pleaded guilty on Monday to a charge of drug trafficking between May 11, 2007, and April 23, 2009.

He also pleaded guilty to possessing property, substances and objects, such as laboratory glassware, used in connection with drug trafficking.

However, the Crown is challenging the time period for the trafficking during a contested sentence hearing.

Prosecutor Sarah Farndon told the court the prosecution allege Barker trafficked the drug between May 11, 2007, and April 2009.

She said Barker became the prime suspect of a covert police drug operation during which he was secretly recorded making drug deals with four regular high level operatives during telephone calls over a two-year period.

The court was told Barker’s clients would order quantities of methamphetamine by choosing the starting gate of a fictitious horse race to for each ounce of the drug they required. For example Gate 2 would denote two ounces, while Gate 4 would denote four ounces.

Ms Farndon said the deals would be completed during meetings with one client over a “cuppa’’ at the Mad Hatter’s Tea House, at Landsborough, over a pie with another near the Ettamogah Pub, at Palm View.

She said Barker would sell one ounce of methamphetamine to his customers for amounts of between $3000 and $4200 and that one of the dealers settled his account by issuing him a check for $100,000.

The court was told during a raid of Barker’s home they found $995,250 in hidden cash, including $273,880 stuffed into two shopping bags hidden behind a false wall and $485,000 hidden inside a buried plastic drum.

The prosecution claims during the period of Barker’s drug trafficking, his illegal earnings were estimated to be $1.78 million.

Ms Farndon said one of Barker’s co-offenders was sentenced to five years jail for his role in the drug trafficking venture.

The two-day hearing continues.



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