Gypsy Jokers president Ralph Kometer jailed over $600,000 meth bust
February 06, 2012
SENIOR Gypsy Joker bikie Ralph Kometer has been jailed for eight years over the seizure of 1.36kg of methamphetamine destined for distribution in the Goldfields.
Kometer, 44, believed to be president of the Kalgoorlie chapter of the Gypsy Jokers, was today sentenced to eight years jail, backdated to December 6, 2011.
District Court Judge Henry Wisbey said Kometer would be eligible for parole in six years.
Kometer had attempted to hide the methamphetamine in a spare car tyre.
The Gypsy Joker bikie boss pleaded not guilty and stood trial in the Perth District Court late last year. He was found guilty after a five-day trial of possession with intent to sell or supply.
In sentencing Judge Wisbey said the fact that Kometer pleaded not guilty meant there was no suggestion of remorse.
Judge Wisbey noted that Kometer, who was employed as a truck driver in Kalgoorlie and had a partner and child, had had an unsettled childhood and little education, but said that meant little considering his age.
He said Kometer also had a criminal record, which included possession of cannabis, and immediate imprisonment was the only appropriate course of action.
Gang Crime Squad detectives intercepted a vehicle, driven by Kometer, along the Great Southern Highway at the Lakes, east of Perth, back in November 2010.
A large quantity of drugs were uncovered in the vehicle after a search by detectives and the police dog squad.
Police then raided properties in Ryde Street Gosnells and Edgar Street, Kalgoorlie.
Judge Wisbey said: "Kometer had a clear intention to distribute the methamphetamine in Kalgoorlie simply to reward himself.''
The judge described the drug run as a "secretive activity with a criminal intent.''
Detective Inspector Paul McMurtrie, of the Gang Crime squad, estimated the total value of the drugs to be just under $600,000.
“(The operation) has clearly demonstrated several members of the Gypsy Jokers outlaw motorcycle gang have been involved in organised crime and the upper echelon of drug distribution, and will also resort to bearing arms to defending their industry,” he said.
“To get 1.36kg of methylamphetamine off the street is significant in any terms, and certainly significant in relation to Kalgoorlie-Boulder.
“Any time that an outlaw motorcycle gang patch member is charged with significant charges is a good result for the community,” he said.
Cannabis and an unlicensed Carbine .30 calibre M1 assault rifle were uncovered in the raid of the Gosnells property. In addition, 400 rounds of ammunition and a bayonet were found.