You are using an older browser version. Please use a supported version for the best MSN experience.

Iranian man detained over Vic opium plot

AAP logoAAP 5/12/2016 Melissa Iaria

An Iranian man who came to Australia by boat without a visa four years ago will be sent to immigration detention again over a plot to obtain 1.7kg of pure opium in the mail.

Eslam Askari, 35, was sentenced to eight months' jail in the Victorian County Court on Tuesday after pleading guilty to attempting to possess a marketable quantity of a border-controlled drug.

The term takes into account more than 400 days Askari has already spent in pre-sentence custody, and the court heard he will now be taken into immigration detention.

The court heard the drug was smuggled into Australia, hidden in machine parts in October last year, and was intended for a Werribee address.

Judge Carolyn Douglas accepted Askari was an opium smoker, but not an addict.

She also accepted his role was lesser than his co-offender, Behrus Miri Kalaniki, another Iranian asylum seeker who was jailed for 10 months in October and also released into immigration detention.

Askari left Iran after converting to Christianity and arrived in Australia by boat, via Indonesia in 2012, the court was told.

He was sent to immigration detention at Christmas Island before being given a bridging visa, then worked as a meatworker in NSW, then Melbourne.

His visa was cancelled on his arrest in October, 2015.

Judge Douglas accepted his offending was at the "low end" of the scale but said only a prison term could reflect the seriousness of the crime.

image beaconimage beaconimage beacon