Bail decision for Cairns lawyer on drug charges
A FORMER Cairns Crown Prosecutor accused of being a key figure in a Far North drug syndicate refused to comment on whether or not he would fight the serious charges he is facing.
Solicitor Roger Griffith, who was released yesterday afternoon after spending two nights in custody, cannot practice law while he is out on bail.
Waiting outside the Cairns watch house was his wife and dog.
When asked if he would defend the charges he shook his head and said, "I'm not saying anything."
The 54-year-old is accused of trafficking ice and cannabis, perverting the course of justice, money laundering and burglary after allegedly becoming involved in a million-dollar drug syndicate for money. Six co-accused are in custody.
The Cairns Magistrates Court heard that Mr Griffith's defence conceded there was a case for the money laundering charge, but there was no direct evidence that he was at the subject premises in relation to the burglary charge.
"In a somewhat unusual situation the defendant is a lawyer who has previously fulfilled the role of principal Crown Prosecutor and who has prosecuted persons charged with very serious crimes," Brisbane Magistrate Bronwyn Springer said.
"It is not contentious that the charges are serious and may result in significant periods of imprisonment if the defendant is found guilty of them."
Police opposed bail arguing that Mr Griffith was a flight risk and may interfere with witnesses.
Magistrate Springer said the prosecution case was "not a weak case by any means", but Mr Griffith was "entitled the presumption of innocence".
It is alleged that the offending occurred between mid-2016 and November last year while Mr Griffith was acting as a barrister for a man accused of being the syndicate's leader and that be moved from being a legal adviser to major player within the organisation.
Mr Griffith must comply with strict bail conditions, which include reporting to police every Tuesday and Friday, surrendering his passport and he must not practice law.