24 August 2023

Alleged street-level meth dealer laundered $18,000 through a bank account

| Albert McKnight
man is mask outside court

Ryan Kyle Tonna, pictured in 2021, has admitted money laundering offences. Photo: Albert McKnight.

A man who was apparently a street-level drug dealer has been caught laundering thousands of dollars and possessing about six times the trafficable amount of meth.

Ryan Kyle Tonna admitted to laundering about $21,000 after receiving around $18,000 into his bank account via numerous transactions and being found with over $3000 cash.

He also confessed to having about 33 grams of meth before appearing in the ACT Magistrates Court for a sentencing hearing on Monday (21 August).

Police claimed Tonna was getting numerous payments for drugs that were paid into his bank account from April to June 2022, court documents say.

Transaction references for these payments included “yeah”, “thanks”, “homie”, “yo sup” and “skank allowance”.

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On 26 June 2022, Tonna ran from police officers when they spotted him in Taylor. He was later seen trying to hide a satchel bag in the front yard of a home in Moncrieff before continuing to run.

Police found this bag which contained a debit card in Tonna’s name, 33 grams of methylamphetamine and $3350 cash.

His mobile phone was later examined, with police claiming they found records of conversations that suggested he had been dealing drugs to 26 different contacts.

Tonna pleaded guilty to two counts of money laundering and one count of drug trafficking.

His lawyer, Andrew Fraser from Fraser Criminal Law, described him as “something of a battler” whose life had changed after he suffered a serious assault that saw him increase his drug use until it became an addiction.

He said while the total amount of laundered money was about $21,000, the qualified tiler had “not been living the high life”, such as driving a sports car or staying in luxury hotels.

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The prosecutor described Tonna as a “street-level dealer” and said the 33 grams of meth he had been caught with was about six times the trafficable amount of the drug.

She said it seemed to be a case of dealing to feed his own addiction and that it was clear drug use was his main criminogenic factor.

Magistrate Cook said he would consider the material provided to the court and sentence Tonna on 29 August.

The 25-year-old, who has already been in jail for over three months on these charges, was remanded in custody until then.

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