£250 in Fines for Frauds in "Bootleg" Tobacco
13 April 1945 Goulburn Evening Post
For his part in "the greatest fraud against tobacco excise yet discovered in Australia" Baden Roberts Kitchener Chinnery, 44, of Murray Street, Cootamundra, was fined a total of £250 in the Special Court yesterday.
He pleaded not guilty to three charges of having had under his control manufactured excisable goods on which duty had not been paid.
The charges related to four sugar-bags of tobacco, sold to Palmers' of Wallendbeen, for £62/10/-; 1001b. sold to Solomon Cohen Pty., Ltd., Cootamundra, for the same amount; and four sugar-bags of tobacco found in a lorry at Wagga.
Mr. J. C. Braund (for the Crown) said 1904lb. of contraband tobacco, manufactured in Tumut, had been sold in the Riverina.
Duty evaded on sales in 10 towns exceeded, £ 1000. Prices had ranged from 12/6 to 14/6 a lb.
Chinnery, when he was questioned about the tobacco found in the truck, told the police the tobacco was "bootleg stuff," made at Tumut by Dang Charlie Doon, a wealthy Chinese skin-buyer.
Later, Doon, who had been a tobacco-grower, but had no licence to manufacture, said he had sold a quantity of tobacco to Chinnery for 8/ lb. Chinnery then declared he had acted only as selling agent for Doon.
Mr. Braund added that Doon, McCauley and 13 retailers had al- ready been convicted and fined. Mr. F. F. McGuren (for Chinnery) said Chinnery had acted in good faith as agent for Doon, and had signed all receipts on Doon's behalf.
He had made no attempt to disguise his activities.
Mr. R. Atkinson S.M.. fining Chinnery £100 on each of the first two charges, and £50 on the third, with £7/10/- costs, said any offence against the Excise Act was serious, but he did not consider the case warranted the maximum penalty.