ACT News


Pair denied bail after drugs, cash seized from Kambah house

A Sydney man who was charged after police seized drugs and more than $40,000 cash from a Kambah house had visited the home's owner to buy a car, a court has heard.

Police found packets of methylamphetamine, as well as bags of a green plant substance, stashed in the lounge, washing machine and fridge when they searched the house just after 10am on Sunday.

The home's owner, Sharon Ann Stott, 52, and Charlie Vo, 34, were both refused bail when they faced the ACT Magistrates Court on Monday.

Stott pleaded not guilty to charges of drug supply and possessing suspected stolen property.

Vo did not enter pleas for the same two offences.

But lawyers for the pair argued the police statement of facts submitted to the court lacked detail and did not contain enough evidence to link the pair to the alleged offences.


Vo told police he had travelled to Canberra in a hire car to put down a cash deposit on a four-wheel-drive he was buying from Stott for between $15,000 and $16,000, court documents showed. 

He said he had $5000 cash in his pocket, which he had stashed in the lounge when police arrived at the house on Sunday, the documents said. 

Officers who searched the house allegedly discovered a total of $31,950 worth of $50 notes hidden inside a console in the lounge.

They also said they found $14,405 cash in Stott's bedroom, as well as an allegedly stolen iPad, a small amount of ammunition and a laptop bag which contained an ice pipe, scales and a mobile phone. 

Court documents showed Stott told police she didn't know anything about the money in the lounge suite and she declined to comment on the drugs allegedly found scattered throughout the home. 

CCTV footage allegedly showed Vo arriving at the house carrying the laptop bag on Sunday morning. 

Police said Vo made admissions the bag belonged to him, but would not comment on any of the items found inside.

Text messages published in court documents showed the two accused exchanged messages over the sale of a car. 

Vo's Legal Aid lawyer said the prosecution case was weak and there was nothing in the evidence to suggest his client had been in possession of  drugs at the time of his arrest.

He said Vo, who lived in Hinchinbrook in Sydney's western suburbs and worked as a courier, maintained he was at the house with the cash to buy a car.

While a significant amount of drugs had been found inside the house, he argued his client had only arrived at the house a few hours earlier.

Magistrate Robert Cook said while the alleged offences were serious and involved a large sum of money, an ongoing police investigation still needed to make clear "who did what and who had what".

He said the probe meant Vo posed a flight risk and he was concerned over the "vagueness" of several Sydney residential addresses the accused provided to the court.

A defence lawyer for Stott, who the court heard had lived in the house for the past 14 years with her two sons, said his client did not appear to be "the main protagonist here".

He said she preferred not to bank her cash and occasionally bought and sold cars to make money.

Prosecutors said the circumstantial evidence against the pair was strong, and that it was hard to believe Stott would know nothing about drugs secreted in the home's airconditioning unit, bar fridge and washing machine. 

Mr Cook denied both bail and each will face court again separately in coming weeks.