THE case against one of three people arrested over a $2 million drug haul uncovered near Wodonga might be resolved before the matter goes to trial.
Ly Dang faces trafficking and other charges over just under two kilograms of methamphetamine allegedly found in his car almost 12 months ago.
Prosecutor Andy Moore told the County Court in Wangaratta yesterday that negotiations were continuing with Dang’s defence.
Mr Moore said the Crown was still hopeful of a conclusion to the matters involving Dang.
Judge Julian Leckie further remanded Dang, 40, in custody for a trial beginning in Wangaratta on March 12.
Dang and his co-accused, Ho Ngoc, 32, and Cao Tuyen Le, 40, previously pleaded not guilty to one count each of trafficking a large commercial quantity of methamphetamine, possessing a drug of dependence and possessing the proceeds of trafficking a drug of dependence.
Ho and Le had their bail extended for next month’s trial when they appeared yesterday.
Mr Moore told the court yesterday the three were charged only after a chance intercept of their hire car on the Hume Freeway on April 27.
“Dang was driving the car and the others were his passengers,” he said.
Mr Moore told Judge Leckie that a “significant” amount of methamphetamine and cash were found in the car.
He said regardless of whether the matter against Dang was resolved or not, the trial was unlikely to go for more than one week.
Judge Leckie said it appeared the three had been “unlucky enough” to be detected over the offences for which they had been charged.
“It’s really just a question of possession and knowledge,” he said of the case.
Dang’s defence said he hoped to have these matters finalised before he faced a plea hearing over similar, unrelated drug charges in Melbourne on March 25.
Police claim they found two bags of methamphetamine in the car — one weighed 995.8 grams and the other 996 grams, each with a purity of 90 per cent.
Another 3.8-gram bag of methamphetamine, again with 90 per cent purity, was found inside Le’s underwear when he was searched at the Wodonga police station.
One bag was allegedly found in the car boot and the other on the back seat floor at Ho’s feet.