Co-written by Bethany Kickert
- The infamous Tony Mokbel has been ordered to face a retrial on recently quashed drug-trafficking charges.
- The 12-year sentence was overturned in December 2020 due to the involvement of Nicola Gobbo, better known as Lawyer X.
- Mokbel’s legal team were previously pushing for a complete acquittal as they stated the publicity on the case would prevent him from receiving a fair trial.
In December of 2020, the court quashed Tony Mokbel’s 12-year conviction for importing two kilograms of cocaine from Mexico, the charge which led to his infamous escape to Greece, on account of Nicola Gobbo’s unlawful informing, otherwise known as the ‘Lawyer X’ scandal.
Last year, Commonwealth lawyer Rowena Orr, QC told the court, “The director has already determined in this matter to not conduct a retrial.”
However, in April 2021, the court was “far from persuaded” that a fair trial could not be achieved. All three justices agreed on the strength of the case against Mokbel, despite one of the three advocating for an acquittal.
Mokbel’s legal team noted that at the time of appeal of this particular charge, he had already served his sentence in full, meaning that ruling a retrial would be arguably unlawful.
However, the court has stated that ‘practical futility would not be an overriding factor’ in their decision, and the majority ruled for a fresh trial to take place in which a further decision would be left ‘to the proper decision-makers.’
Tony Mokbel continues to seek appeals of his numerous other charges for which he is currently serving time, some being heard as early as July.
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ABOUT LARA MENON:
Lara joined the Coutts Lawyers & Conveyancers Legal team in August 2018 and is currently working as a Lawyer in our Criminal and Family Law team.
Earlier in 2019, Lara was selected by the NSW Law Society to undertake an internship with the NSW Coroner’s Court, working as a Judge’s Associate for the Deputy State Coroner.
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