‘Queen of Richmond’ jailed for drug smuggling using Malaysian Airlines flight attendants 

‘Queen of Richmond’ heroin tycoon is jailed for elaborate scam involving drugs being smuggled in the undies of Malaysian Airlines flight attendants

  • Michelle Ngoc Tran has been jailed for 18 years for her role in heroin syndicate 
  • The 49-year-old woman referred to herself as the ‘Queen of Richmond’ 
  • She was arrested last year, and was one of seven main players in the syndicate 

A Melbourne woman who directed an international heroin syndicate has been jailed for up to 18 years.

Michelle Ngoc Tran had a significant reputation in the drug trade, and referred to herself as the ‘Queen of Richmond’.

She used Malaysian Airlines flight attendants to import ‘tickets’ of heroin, by concealing it in their underwear.

Michelle Ngoc Tran used Malaysian Airlines flight attendants to import ‘tickets’ of heroin, by concealing it in their underwear

The heroin was 70-80 per cent purity and Tran boasted it was ‘the highest purity available in Australia’.

Tran paid $155,000 for each ‘ticket’ of heroin, which weighed about a kilogram, and then sold the drugs wholesale for $195,000 per unit.

Tran would arrange for her drug mule flight attendants to be paid in cash, before they returned to Malaysia less than 10 hours later.

The County Court in Melbourne heard the 49-year-old was arrested last year, and was one of seven main players in the syndicate.

Tran was the Australian end of the syndicate, and dealt with a supplier in Malaysia known as ‘Mr Hanoi’, through two of her associates, called ‘The Manager’ and ‘Johnny.’

‘Mr Hanoi’ would alert Tran when the heroin was about to arrive on Malaysian Airlines flights to Australia.

The County Court in Melbourne heard the 49-year-old was arrested last year, and was one of seven main players in the syndicate

The County Court in Melbourne heard the 49-year-old was arrested last year, and was one of seven main players in the syndicate

Judge Michael Cahill told Tran that despite her submissions that she was selling the drugs to repay gambling debts, he found her primary motivation was profit.

‘Your offending was extremely serious and your culpability is very high,’ he told her.

Tran pleaded guilty to importing and trafficking a commercial quantity of heroin and will serve a non-parole period of 13 years.

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