Crime Files Network

Top cop’s son pleads guilty

to cooking meth

Aja Styles

April 29, 2011

Russel O'Callaghan, son of Police Commissioner Karl O'Callahan, was injured after a drug lab blew up yesterday afternoon.

Police Commissioner Karl O’Callaghan’s son has pleaded guilty to attempting to manufacture methamphetamine after he was linked to an explosion in an alleged clandestine drug lab.

Russell O’Callaghan, 29, was charged with trying to make the drug in a Homeswest villa in Carlisle, tenanted by Jason Marzoli, before the highly unstable chemicals exploded on March 19.

Mr Marzoli, 29, has also been accused of trying to manufacture the drug, which is commonly known as “ice”. 

Jason Marzoli was the tenant of the Homeswest home in question.Jason Marzoli is also facing drug charges. 

It was confirmed in court today that 1.2 grams of methylamphetamine was found at the property.

Due to the small amount detected, the offence was considered less serious and will be handled by the Magistrate’s Court instead of the District Court.

Mr O’Callaghan jnr fronted court today for the first time since being treated for burns to most of his upper body he suffered in the blast.

Russell O'Callaghan leaving court.Russell O’Callaghan leaving court. 

The explosion injured five people and two children, aged three and four, narrowly escaped harm after being found in a car parked 20m away.

Mr O’Callaghan jnr was being treated in Royal Perth Hospital for burns to his head, shoulders and arms and was unable to attend his first court appearance in person on April 1.

Mr Marzoli attended alone, having suffered minor burns to his neck and hands, and was granted bail on the condition that he not go within 100m of the Carlisle villa or buy any medications containing psuedoephedrine, which is the base drug used to manufacture ice.

Mr O’Callaghan jnr’s lawyer Mark Andrews told the court at the time he was confident his client would be able to attend court in person in four weeks time.

Mr Andrews said early police reports indicated the maximum yield of methylamphetamine from the alleged laboratory was 1.2 grams and “it was not a sophisticated operation”.

A hospital spokeswoman confirmed Mr O’Callaghan jnr was discharged earlier this month.

Today, Mr O’Callaghan jnr briefly attended court and did not appear to have any visible scarring to his face but was wearing a long-sleeve shirt, tie and trousers, which concealed most of his body.

After formally entering the plea, he was granted bail, with a $2000 undertaking and conditions similar to his co-accused, to be sentenced on June 1.

Outside court Mr O’Callaghan jnr remained tight-lipped over his admission of guilt and his current well-being. Mr Andrews also refused to comment saying it would be “inappropriate” at this stage of legal proceedings.

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