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'Respectful' man avoids jail over drug lab

AAP logoAAP 28/11/2016 Rick Goodman

A young man convicted over a methamphetamine lab in an Adelaide shed has avoided jail, with a judge saying he's unlikely to reoffend.

Domenico Francesco Catanzariti pleaded guilty to manufacturing a large commercial quantity of a controlled drug - with the potential to net $6 million - over the clandestine lab, found at Bibaringa in 2012.

South Australian District Court Judge Sydney Tilmouth on Monday said Catanzariti was a "respectful, hardworking and generous" young man with no other criminal history, and wholly suspended his 20-month jail sentence.

He said the 24-year-old had strong family support.

"I am not expecting to see you in court again," Judge Tilmouth said.

Catanzariti stood in the dock and wiped away a tear as he learned of his fate, while his family and fiancee looked on in support.

He now works in his family's olive production business as marketing manager and he has plans to build a house on a block of land owned by his partner.

The court heard Catanzariti had contact with a man who delivered a trailer of items that he knew would be used in the "cook" of drugs.

But he was sentenced on the basis he was not actively involved in the production of the drugs, as it remained unclear how much of a part he played.

The lab was discovered after police legally intercepted phone calls and then placed the home under surveillance.

Police raided the home under the cover of darkness.

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