Cash falls out of wall after cop leans against it
HE DIDN'T trust banks, so he had thousands of dollars hidden in a wall.
He was self-medicating with cannabis due to an ongoing health problem.
This may have seemed an unlikely story to police, but these claims, have helped to overturn a Kyogle man's convictions.
Mark Everard Chaplin, 62, also known as Markus Karlylle, faced Lismore District Court for an appeal hearing last week and Judge Julia Baly gave her reasons for this on Tuesday.
Judge Baly found the prosecution had not proved beyond a reasonable doubt that Mr Chaplin was, indeed, supplying the drugs to others of that cash seized from his business was connected to any criminal conduct.
Mr Chaplin was convicted of dealing with the proceeds of crime and drug supply before Lismore Local Court on May 3 last year.
Police had attended his computer repair business in Kyogle on November 16, 2016.
The court heard Mr Chaplin immediately brought to their attention the presence of numerous bags, each containing four grams of cannabis.
Mr Chaplin had insisted from the outset he did not sell the drug, but that it was given to him pre-measured and would be made into cannabis cookies and cakes, for his own consumption.
Police found about $2000 in his possession, then when an officer leaned against a wall, a sum of cash fell out.
They found another $7000 was cached in the wall.
Police also found a list of names and monetary amounts which they alleged was a "tick list" of people Mr Chaplin had allegedly sold cannabis to.
But he claimed this was a list of people he'd lent money to.
The court heard police had found his recent financial records were at odds with the money discovered, but they failed to compare this with previous, far more profitable years.
Judge Baly said Mr Chaplin's claims were "not far-fetched" and found the prosecution had failed to disprove them beyond a reasonable doubt.
"I find there's a reasonable explanation consistent with innocence," she said.
"The money is, I find, likely to be the proceeds of his business.
"The prosecution has failed to disprove the cannabis was for (personal use)."
The money, which was seized, will be returned to Mr Chaplin.