Secretary breaks down in tears as the VERY special present for her fiancé she hid in three suitcases on a plane is revealed in court
- Legal secretary smuggled marijuana on plane
- Emily Ross delivered her then-partner
- She avoided prison after her sentence was suspended
A legal secretary who was “intent on impressing” her then-drug trafficker fiancée carried three suitcases of marijuana for him on a plane bound for Brisbane, a court has said.
Emily Louise Ross wept in the Brisbane High Court dock as details of her role in a major human trafficking operation – estimated by a judge to be worth more than $7 million – were brought to light by prosecutors on Friday.
More than 100 lbs (45 kg) of marijuana, along with significant amounts of cocaine, methylamphetamine and cash, were seized after police patrolled the young woman as she landed from Brisbane airport in December 2019.
Ross had transported the drugs in three suitcases after flying from Sydney to Brisbane and delivering them to her then-partner, Paul Luu.
Emily Louise Ross escaped jail at the Brisbane High Court on Friday but walked away with a suspended sentence. Photo: NCA NewsWire
The court was told that Ross (pictured) then took another bag of cocaine and ice to a storage locker in Oxley, where she was apprehended by police. Photo: NCA NewsWire
“It was extremely serious behavior,” Crown Prosecutor Natalie Lima told the court.
“She would have known it was a substantial amount and it was for commercial purposes.”
Ross, 27, eventually received a five-year sentence, but Supreme Court Justice Lincoln Crowley ordered that the convict be immediately suspended.
She pleaded guilty to three possessions of dangerous drugs at the end of last year.
The court was told that Ross and Luu were engaged when she carried three suitcases full of drugs aboard a plane bound for Brisbane on December 23, 2019.
After delivering them to Luu at a hotel room in Spring Hill, she was given another suitcase and told to place it in a storage closet in Oxley.
That suitcase contained 6.7 kg of pure methylamphetamine and 437 g of cocaine.
The court was told that the estimated value of both drugs was worth up to $7 million, while the marijuana was worth up to $1.36 million.
“Police had been monitoring Ms. Ross’s movements that day and intercepted her as she was about to open Mr. Luu’s safe,” Ms. Lima said.
Two firearms were found in the safe.
Police discovered just over 100 pounds (45 kg) of packaged marijuana and other amounts of drugs and cash when they searched Luu’s hotel room.
Luu was sentenced to 12 years in prison in 2022 and was eligible for immediate release due to his time in pre-trial detention.
Ross’ attorney Matthew Hynes told the court his client’s act was an “isolated anomaly” that happened one morning.
During police raids on Paul Luu’s locker and a hotel room in 2019, large amounts of drugs, firearms and cash were seized. Photo: Queensland Police Department
Ross was supported by family and friends in court on Friday.
The court was told she had no criminal record and that Ross was “temporarily” involved in the drug operation.
Mr Hynes said Ross had an ‘unstable’ early life but got a paying job as a legal secretary.
She had since moved on to starting her own beauty business, the court was told.
Mr Hynes said character references said Ross was ‘isolated’, separated from her family and friends and ‘victimised’ at Luu’s hands.
A psychological report spoke of Ross being “enthralled” by Luu’s lifestyle at the time and “eager to impress him.”
Ross (center) was supported by numerous family and friends during Friday’s sentencing. Photo: NCA NewsWire
“That is, she’s more likely to do as he says,” Mr. Hynes said.
In sentencing Ross, Judge Crowley took into account the “exceptional circumstances” in the case, including the woman’s need to care for her month-old baby.
Supporters expressed their relief outside court, one hugging Ross as she left the wharf after court.