A WOMAN arrested in an operation targeting drugs linked to the Bandidos bikie gang is a practising solicitor who was caught “red-handed” counting drug money, a court has heard.
Alina Yousif, 26, was working as a lawyer up to the point she was arrested in raids focusing on the gang in Albury early Wednesday morning.
She allegedly took part in the supply of 55.5 grams of the drug ice, used false documents to obtain property, recklessly dealt with the proceeds of crime and took part in a criminal group.
Yousif appeared distressed and started crying as parts of the case against her was laid out in Albury Local Court on Thursday, where she applied for bail.
The lawyer – who is listed as living in Kooba Street with co-accused Clinton Roy Parkinson – had been defending people in Wagga court earlier this week.
The North Albury house was recently the scene of late-night raids involving Strike Force Raptor.
The group is alleged to have used false Indian drivers licences and documents in a bid to obtain NSW licences from Roads and Maritime Services.
Parkinson, 34, is accused of a string of ice, MDMA and cocaine supply offences in the Albury region.
He swore at magistrate Tony Murray during Thursday’s hearing, where he did not apply for bail.
“Shut the f--- up,” Parkinson shouted to Mr Murray as he was ordered out.
His cousin, 26-year-old Wangaratta man Danny Kearney, is accused of various dishonesty offences and participating in a criminal group.
Kaitlers Road resident David Alan Oddy, 66, failed to get bail on cannabis and ice-dealing charges.
Speaking during Yousif’s bail application, Sergeant Andrew Coombs said it was an “extremely strong prosecution case”, with a large amount of evidence that had been electronically recorded.
Magistrate Tony Murray said there had been covert recordings made during the investigation and other digital evidence.
It’s alleged Yousif was reckless with $8000 cash suspected of being the proceeds of crime.
“She is literally caught out red-handed, on this material, counting out the money,” Mr Murray said.
Her lawyer Christine Mendes said it had been a “very difficult evening” for her client after spending her first night behind her bars at Junee.
Yousif appeared via video link and was supported by a prison chaplain, and dropped her head as she was refused bail.
She will return to court on February 5 with Oddy and Parkinson, while Kearney will return on December 18.
All four will remain in custody.
Hotel rooms were also searched in Albury.