The trial of a man who allegedly took possession of over 300 grams of cocaine delivered to him in a chocolate box has resumed after a mistrial was declared yesterday.
Stephen Alan Fenn is on trial in the Wollongong District Court on one charge of attempting to possess a marketable quantity of an unlawfully imported drug.
On Tuesday, October 10, a mistrial was declared and the jury dismissed, after one juror received a different set of papers to their peers.
A new jury was empanelled on Wednesday, October 11 and the trial restarted before Judge Huw Baker.
The jury heard in opening submissions from counsel for the Crown David Jordan that in October 2021, the Australian Border Force intercepted a package that contained cocaine as it arrived in Australia from Ireland.
The package also included confectionery marked as a "gift" and the cocaine was located inside boxes labelled "Cadbury moist chocolate cake mix".
The cocaine was removed and a substitute substance was placed in the box, before it was resealed and delivered by an undercover police officer to Fenn's Brownsville address.
Fenn accepted the package, and later that day uniformed police officers arrived at his address and invited him to come to Lake Illawarra police station, where he participated in an interview.
Defence lawyer Patrick Schmidt said the case was a "simple" one, and hinged upon if Fenn knew whether the box he picked up would have contained cocaine.
"Mr Fenn had no idea that this package contained the cocaine, nor any reason to suspect it did when he accepted it," Mr Schmidt said.
Instead, Mr Schmidt said, Fenn was expecting a delivery of pyjama pants, with a quote from Home Alone emblazoned on them.
Following the opening addresses, the jury heard evidence from Detective Senior Constable Quinn and a recording of Fenn's interview with police was played.
In the interview, Fenn tells police that the package "looked a bit suss" as the size did not match the size of the items he was expecting.
The jury also heard intercepted phone calls between Fenn and friends of his. In one, Fenn tells another man, childhood friend Danny Nikolovski, that he found a "a vaccine passport" and that the police had come to his house.
The trial continues.
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