Lucky Gattellari initiated a plot to demand millions from Sydney property tycoon Ron Medich in return for giving tainted evidence at his murder trial - but Gattellari didn't control some of the decisions that followed, a court has heard.
The 69-year-old faced a NSW District Court sentence hearing on Friday alongside co-offender Shayne Desmond Hatfield, after a jury last year found him guilty of two counts of conspiracy to defraud.
Gattellari's charges relate to plots in 2013 and 2014 to demand money from Medich, who had been arrested for the 2009 execution-style murder of business foe Michael McGurk.
Hatfield, 53, was found guilty of being part of the second plot which also involved disgraced former police officers Roger Rogerson and Glen McNamara.
Gattellari's barrister Maurice Gelbert on Friday told the court it was true his client was the initiator of the first conspiracy and he could have stopped things along the way.
"But the fact also is that there were decisions being made along the way for which my client was not in control," he said.
In regards to the second plot, Mr Gelbert said his client was in a position to initiate it, but he submitted Gattellari played a lesser role than in the first one and desisted when police visited him in mid-2014 told him to do so.
Both of the conspiracies were doomed to fail, the lawyer said.
Crown prosecutor Darren Robinson said while it was true a co-accused in the first plot sometimes made decisions, he believed they would be signed off by Gattellari.
In April 2018, the Supreme Court jury at Medich's trial accepted Gattellari's evidence that the businessman masterminded and financed the shooting of Mr McGurk.
Gattellari has already served his minimum seven-and-a-half year jail term for being an accessory before Mr McGurk's murder, receiving a 60 per cent discount for his guilty plea and helping authorities.
His total sentence for that offence expires in 2020, and he's scheduled to be sentenced on the conspiracy charges in June.
Australian Associated Press