Queensland woman charged after allegedly helping son flee Australia

Hands in handcuffs

A 64-year-old Queensland woman is due to face Queensland Magistrates Court in Mackay today after being arrested on charges of attempting to pervert justice and giving false evidence.

Australian Federal Police (AFP) and Queensland Police Service (QPS) officers arrested the woman yesterday (28 July) in Mackay.

The police investigation will allege that the Mount Coolon woman deliberately misled judicial proceedings after her son failed to appear before court on attempted importation and trafficking charges.

The woman told the Supreme Court in 2016 that she had not contacted her son for several weeks and was of the view that her son had taken his own life.

Instead police will allege that she helped her son evade authorities by purchasing and preparing a yacht for him to flee on while he was out on bail in 2015.

Property and cash totalling $395,000 (which was provided to secure his bail) was forfeited to the court following his disappearance.

The man is wanted by the AFP for his role in allegedly importing more than 71 kilograms of cocaine into Australia in 2011. A two-year international operation resulted in his arrest in the Philippines in September 2017.

The woman has been charged with one count of giving false testimony, contrary to section 35 of the Crimes Act 1914 (Cth.) and one count of attempting to pervert justice, contrary to section 43 of the Crimes Act 1914 (Cth.). The maximum penalty for these offences are 5 and 10 years respectively.

AFP Manager Organised Crime, Acting Commander Peter Bodel said that this arrest was the result of a police investigation that has spanned several years.

"Since the investigation was launched in 2011, members of the Australian Federal Police have spent countless hours bringing these people to justice" he said.

"This arrest in Queensland shows just how relentlessly the AFP will pursue not only those who try to bring drugs into this country but also those individuals who support organised crime."


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