Aussie drug bust: Jailed S'porean fails in appeal bid

Aussie drug bust: Jailed S'porean fails in appeal bid

A Singaporean jailed over one of Australia's biggest drug busts has lost his bid for more time to appeal against his sentence.

Koh Keng Chuan, 33, had been sentenced to 161/2 years' jail by the Sydney District Court back in June 2011, after pleading guilty to knowingly taking part in supplying 2,272kg of liquid Ecstasy.

The haul could have been processed into Ecstasy powder with a conservative street value of about A$500 million (S$570 million at current values), which at the time was one of the largest such seizures in Australia.

Koh had recently tried to set in motion an appeal.

The New South Wales Court of Criminal Appeal last Friday turned down his application for an extension of time to seek permission to appeal, finding that his grounds of appeal "lack merit".

It noted that the former car salesman and debt collector had made the application more than two years after being sentenced.

This was a delay borne of a "desire to take advantage" of a favourable decision concerning sentencing, that was recently handed down by Australia's High Court.

The New South Wales court said no error on Koh's sentence had been made, adding: "On his own account, the sentence imposed appears to have been less than he expected."

Koh could have been sentenced to life imprisonment.

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