A man who bought MDMA and other drugs disguised as ‘baby formula’ over the dark web has narrowly avoided jail.
Chaim Goldstein, 34, was arrested in May 2018 after a package headed to his home at Bondi, in Sydney’s eastern suburbs, tested positive to ketamine.
Border Force seized the two cans of baby formula, with 51.3 grams of ketamine and 312 grams of MDMA hidden inside, and replaced the delivery with a substance, the Sydney Morning Herald reported.
Investigators waited outside his home on May 21 and watched Goldstein return, pick up the delivered package and move it to his garage.
Goldstein then drove to his parents’ home and texted his high school friend the delivery had arrived.
He was arrested later that day and told police he was picking up the drugs for said friend, who police believe is the alleged ringleader of a dark web drug syndicate.
Goldstein pleaded guilty to attempting to possess a marketable quantity of a border-controlled drug.
At sentencing in the NSW District Court in Parramatta on Friday, Goldstein’s barrister said his client had ‘no control’ over the extent of the importation.
‘Really his role was quite minimal,’ Matthew Johnston SC told the court.
‘He did receive the drugs, he didn’t open them, he took instructions about what would happen next.’
Mr Johnston added his client had a drug addition at the time, which impacted his conduct.
Goldstein had an opioid addiction in the past and still battles an addiction with benzodiazepines following a back injury from about ten years ago, the court heard.
Earlier attempts to sentence Goldstein were postponed when Xanax was detected in his urine.
Judge Siobhan Herbert described Goldstein’s role in the syndicate as ‘low level’ but ‘vital’.
She sentenced him to a two-year Intensive Correction Order, where Goldstein must complete 370 hours of community service.
Goldstein is also required to abstain from drugs and prescription medication, unless authorised, and will need to submit his urine weekly. He will also be under the care of a psychiatrist and GP.
‘The offender needs to continue to address his drug addiction, as this would be his greatest risk factor for reoffending,’ Judge Herbert said.
If Goldstein fails to follow the order he could find himself serving the rest of the sentence behind bars, Judge Herbert said.
Goldstein spoke outside court and said he was happy with the sentence as it was ‘better than jail’.