Third time not lucky for wealthy drug trafficker

A CONVICTED Coominya drug trafficker who claims he made more than a $1 million collecting golf balls has challenged the conviction for the third time - and lost.

Robert James Upson, 62, originally tried to convince a court his extensive property portfolio, in the Lockyer Valley, Tweed Heads and Brisbane, as well as bank accounts flush with cash, were obtained after years of hard work collecting second-hand golf balls.

He lost and was ordered to pay the state $954, 450.73. At the time Justice Philip McMurdo said there was little evidence to explain how Upson had amassed more than $1.2 million in unexplained wealth during his drug trafficking days.

In a separate challenge, he also tried telling an appeal court he only made $1.1 million from the illegal operation, not $1.3 million.

In his third and latest failed bid to have his name cleared this month, Upson tried telling a court prosecutors had got the charge wrong.

He lost that appeal too.

He was found guilty at a trial in the Brisbane Supreme Court in January 2010 of trafficking cannabis between June 1997 and September 2007.

He was sentenced to eight years in jail and could apply for parole after serving four years.

Justice Robert Gotterson said the appeal was rejected on the same grounds it had been the first two times; Uposon did not have the right to challenge the conviction.

"This Court has no jurisdiction to entertain a further appeal by him against it. For this reason, I would refuse the application for an extension of time within which to appeal against conviction," he said.

"The applicant's proposed ground of appeal is meritless."

An appeal is allowed under the right of appeal in the Criminal Code if it involves a question of law or fact and if it is against the sentence for the conviction.