Tears for guilty car dealer
A Hamilton car dealer is in prison awaiting sentence for his part in a large-scale drug operation.
There were tears and anger from his partner in the public gallery as Stephen John Gray and three other men were found guilty after a nine-week trial in the High Court in Hamilton yesterday.
The jury of nine women and two men took three days to find the well-known car dealer and importer, along with Simon Lindsay Kayrouz, Kenton Ian Haine and Kyle Lane Murphy, guilty of charges relating to a bust in October 2009. Six men in total faced charges, including Gray's son, Michael, who pleaded guilty at the start of the trial to one drugs charge. Brendon Murray Carlisle, 31, also pleaded guilty last month to supplying methamphetamine after overwhelming evidence was put to him by the Crown.
Carlisle also appeared in the Hamilton District Court on the same day, facing three fresh drug charges and remains in custody.
Along with $154,500 in cash, police found 183 grams of methamphetamine at an Exelby Rd property, about 130.2g of cannabis and two tabs of LSD.
At Gray's property on State Highway 23 - at which Kayrouz was living - police found $3650 in cash in Kayrouz's trouser pocket along with another $200 cash.
They also 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".
Gray had earlier 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. Yesterday, Gray was found guilty, together with Kayrouz, on charges of manufacturing methamphetamine between January 1, 2009, and October 17, 2009. Gray was also found guilty of cultivating cannabis between January 2001 and May 22, 2009, possession of cannabis for sale, supplying class B drug MDMA for sale, possession of precursor substances for the manufacture of methamphetamine and possession of equipment and materials.
Kayrouz was found guilty of supplying methamphetamine and unlawful possession of pistols.
Haine was found guilty on three of the four charges he was facing.
Gray was remanded in custody for sentencing in the High Court at Auckland in March, while the other three were also remanded in custody for sentencing in the High Court in Hamilton in February.