Lengthy jail time for MP's siblings

TWO brothers of Bathurst MP Paul Toole have been jailed for running a major drugs syndicate in Newcastle.

Joshua Toole, 28, and Kurt Toole, 22, admitted trading large quantities of cannabis and the party drug methylamphetamine in 2010.

Joshua Toole was yesterday jailed for a minimum of nine years for his “supervisory” role in the syndicate.

Kurt Toole, whom Judge Laura Wells said held a slightly more junior role and did most of the “leg work”, was jailed for a minimum of seven years.

“The operation in my view can be seen as reasonably sophisticated,” Judge Wells said.

“They dealt with large quantities of cannabis and methylamphetamine and made quite a profit.”

The court heard Joshua, who was addicted to steroids, bought and sold at least 25kg of cannabis and 6kg of methylamphetamine.

He was also convicted of handling the proceeds of crime after the NSW Crime Commission discovered $200,000 he’d stuffed into a Newcastle bank safety deposit box.

Kurt bought and sold 17kg of cannabis and just over one kilogram of methylamphetamine.

He was also convicted of smashing windows and doors during a “standover” attack at the home of a rival.

The pair were caught after police intercepted a package of drugs bound for Joshua in September 2010. Kurt was arrested at the Charlestown apartment the brothers shared and used as the base for the syndicate.

Both men admitted the charges at Newcastle Local Court in January. At least six other people who played far more minor roles in the syndicate have since been convicted.

The Tooles’ father, Trevor, told the court his sons became involved with drugs after moving to Newcastle from the family farm in Bathurst. Kurt and Joshua have seven brothers and sisters, who have careers in teaching, health and the police force.

“It remains a mystery why the rest of the family have followed paths of respectability but Kurt and Joshua did not,” the brothers’ lawyer Peter Hastings told the court.

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