Car dealer 'drug kingpin'
A well known Hamilton car dealer is allegedly the kingpin of a large scale drug bust that uncovered methamphetamine, cannabis, LSD and ecstasy, the High Court at Hamilton heard this morning.
Crown prosecutor Jacinda Foster began the expected six week-long trial today, which alleges the discovery of a multitude of drugs on three properties in Hamilton and Te Uku.
Six men - Michael Stephen Gray, Stephen John Gray, Simon Lindsay Kayrouz, Kenton Ian Haine, Kyle Lane Murphy and Brendon Carlisle - were charged over the bust which happened on a Te Uku property in October, 2009.
Police say they also found not only the drugs and their precursor substances but large amounts of cash, including more than $150,000 at Stephen Gray's Exelby Rd property.
Ms Foster said Gray is well known in the Hamilton business community as a car salesman and car importer and wholesaler. She described him as "articulate and clever" and someone who wants to be in control.
Ms Foster said police will offer evidence of secretly taped conversations between all of the accused, along with another man who is being prosecuted in another court.
The intercepted phone conversations, to be played to the jury during the trial, will apparently have the accused talking of having "buckets of cash" and how much they have allegedly sold drugs for and how much they have left.
Along with $154,500 cash, police allege they found 183grams of methamphetamine at the Exelby Rd property, about 130.2grams of cannabis and two tabs of LSD.
At Gray's property on SH23 - at which Kayrouz was living - police found $3650 cash in Kayrouz's trouser pocket along with another $200 cash. They also allege to have found bags of cannabis stalk and leaf, along with small pre-packaged bags of cannabis.
Chemicals associated with the manufacture of P were also found and Kayrouz was described as "the cook".
One of the accused, Michael Stephen Gray, pleaded guilty to one charge of cultivating cannabis and was convicted and remanded on bail for sentencing on December 4.
Gray's father, Stephen John Gray, 56, is represented by Phillip Morgan QC and yesterday also pleaded guilty to a variety of charges but is fighting others.
Gray admitted supplying methamphetamine between May 22, 2009 and October 17, 2009, possession of methamphetamine for supply on October 12, 2009, supplying class A drug ''lysergide'' - commonly known as LSD, selling cannabis, and conspiring to sell cannabis between May 22, 2009 and October 17, 2009.
Gray, together with Kayrouz, denies charges of manufacturing methamphetamine between January 1, 2009, and October 17, 2009. Gray also denies two charges of cultivating cannabis between January 2001 and May 22, 2009, possession of cannabis for sale, two charges of supplying the class B drug MDMA for sale, possession of precursor substances for the manufacture of methamphetamine and possession of equipment and materials, both charges together with Kayrouz.
Kayrouz also denies charges of supplying methamphetamine and unlawful possession of pistols.
Haine denies charges of supplying methamphetamine, supplying lysergide, possession of LSD for sale and selling cannabis.
- © Fairfax NZ News