Delay in marijuana hearing

THE case against a young woman involved in planting one of Australia's largest marijuana crops, worth hundreds of millions of dollars, has had a further delay.

Rosemary Gardner, 34, was listed for a one-day contested sentence hearing before Justice Roslyn Atkinson in the Brisbane Supreme Court on Monday.

The date had been listed for months - to sentence her for helping her father Michael Bennett Gardner Snr produce drugs - but it has now been adjourned to a date to be fixed.

Gardner is one of nine siblings and one of many allegedly involved in helping their father run a large-scale "sophisticated and elaborate commercial venture" at Inglewood, in the southern Darling Downs, from mid-2004 until December, 2008.

Her father, 58 when he was sentenced to 13 years jail in June, organised the family to buy the 2225-hectare property because it had prime grazing land at the front which would "mask the illegal actions" in rocky gullies in the mountainous region behind.

He had eight fields of the drug ranging from 10m long by 15m wide to 30m by 300m and he recruited his young stepchildren, aged 11 to 14, to plant seedlings and tend to thousands of plants when they should have been at school.

Gardner and her brother, Michael Bennett Gardner Jnr, was sentenced to five years jail in December last year for his part in the operation, were accused of playing larger roles.

During her father's sentencing, the court heard Gardner was still trafficking from inside jail, asking his daughter to sell a recent harvest for $280,000.

Her father told police he had no regrets about continuing the trafficking because he was trying to raise as much money as he could to fund an anti-abortion campaign he wanted to launch nation-wide.

Topics:  court marijuana sentencing

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