Drug-dealing gran loses track of cash

Last updated 05:00 26/03/2013

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A drug-dealing grandmother who bought and sold several properties while running her illegal business received $828,000 from unknown sources.

Kapiti Coast grandmother Pamela Ann Ranga, also known as Green, dealt morphine sulphate to addicts and used the profits to fund her lifestyle.

She was listed as a beneficiary on court documents, getting a listed income of $242.63 a week from her invalid's benefit.

But, during her sentencing, it was mentioned that nearly $600,000 was deposited into her bank account. She was said to have bought a BMW, a $23,000 diamond ring, a $13,000 gold watch and paid mortgages on two properties at Raumati Beach and Peka Peka worth more than $1.1 million between 2003 and 2010.

Police are asking for the houses and other goods to be forfeited to the Crown. Before her sentencing, police got a restraining order on the goods and bank accounts.

Ranga was jailed for six years on charges of supplying and conspiring to supply morphine sulphate in 2010. Now Justice David Collins, in the High Court at Wellington, is having to sort out a variety of property transactions, some of which have an unknown source of funds.

Police forensic accountant Stephen Mahy said Ranga received $828,000 from unknown sources, probably from her illegal business.

She received $81,000 from the invalid's benefit over several years, to which she was probably not entitled, given that she ran a successful business, he said.

She was the only signatory on the Pam Green family trust account but no documentation about the trust or any conveyancing documents could be found.

He told Justice Collins there was $181,000 of spending that could be tracked, which was completely in cash. Large deposits were made into bank accounts, of thousands of dollars at a time.

It was hard to estimate what a gross sales figure for the drugs would have been, Mr Mahy said.

Ranga began to give evidence but said she had some memory damage after an overdose. "I'll agree to anything because I can't remember with any clarity."

Some money was used for the Peka Peka house, but some came from other sources. "Everything was done for the grandchildren."

She said she began selling morphine sulphate to support her family after her husband died.

The case is expected to finish today, with the judge reserving his decision.

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- The Dominion Post

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