Bragging 'crack lord' says jail sentence too long
SHE once boasted of making more money than she could spend.
But Buderim "crack lord" Rebecca Teresa Castner's arrest was a major turning point, a barrister says, and her jail term was too harsh.
Castner's appeal against the 10-year jail sentence for ice trafficking was heard on Tuesday.
Her barrister Daniel Caruana said the sentence failed to take account of Castner's "high level of remorse, tied with a low likelihood of reoffending".
At sentencing a year ago, Justice Helen Bowskill said Castner used violent threats and standover tactics to ensure customers paid their debts.
But this week, Mr Caruana told Queensland Court of Appeal the Buderim mother had shown insight.
The 2015 arrest was a turning point, he said, and "machinations" described in her offending contrasted starkly with what Castner told a psychologist.
Mr Caruana said Castner had a troubled upbringing and background, which should have been taken into account at sentencing.
But Crown prosecutor David Finch said Castner made repeated attempts to outfox authorities.
"Word on the street was she was about to be raided."
At one point Castner shifted business operations to a Mooloolaba resort.
Despite police searching a unit linked to the racket, Castner "was quite prepared to persist" in a major commercial enterprise, Mr Finch said.
The Crown claimed Castner's business turned over $30,000 a week at one point.
It reeled in as much as $3.26 million from January to July 2015.
"Being a crack lord is an easy life," the Courier-Mail reported Castner said during an intercepted phone call.
"They'll never catch me... We were making so much money we couldn't spend it."
Mr Finch said Castner displayed "braggadocio" about a drug lord lifestyle, and the sentence imposed was not excessive.
NewsRegional previously reported Castner employed a personal assistant, driver, and security guards.
She used multiple vehicles including a Jeep Cherokee and had access to a luxury high-rise Brisbane property.
"It was quite a sophisticated syndicate," Justice Sue Brown said on Tuesday.
The appeal court reserved its decision. -NewsRegional