Barry Gordon Neale and Michelle Stewart leaving court yesterday.
Barry Gordon Neale and Michelle Stewart leaving court yesterday. Sarah Harvey

'Drug lab was in kid's room'

FOUR people are due to face trial accused of producing dangerous drugs after police discovered an alleged amphetamine lab in a child’s bedroom.

Ipswich Magistrates Court was told the operation was uncovered by police who called at a Riverview home after one of its occupants failed to appear in court on another matter.

Detective Senior Sergeant Tom Armitt said there were several people inside the property in Diamond Street when he and other officers called on August 25.

While talking to the occupants he said he saw the alleged drug laboratory equipment and syringes lying on the floor of a child’s room.

He told the court he then smelled a “strong, volatile ether smell” and immediately evacuated the property.

It is believed three children had been living at the home.

Yesterday Barry Gordon Neale, 35, Michelle Stewart, 35, and Jamie Paul Ziebell, 33, appeared in court charged with producing dangerous drugs, possessing a relevant substance and possessing items used in the commission of a crime.

All three were committed to face trial at Brisbane Supreme Court at a date yet to be fixed.

A fourth defendant, Maryanne Lesley Bransden, 28, has been charged with the same offences but failed to appear in court yesterday.

Magistrate Donna MacCallum issued a warrant for her arrest.

Police told the court Stewart was on the Riverview home’s lease and Bransden was also living there.

Snr Sgt Armitt told the court Bransden was Ziebell’s ex-partner.

The court heard two mobile phones were also seized which police allege contained text messages and phone records relevant to the case.

Ziebell and Stewart’s fingerprints were also allegedly found on lab equipment found dumped by the side of a road in Swanbank in four backpacks.

The defendants refused to be formally interviewed by police.

Neale, Stewart and Ziebell did not enter pleas.



NRL legend is set for his next chapter

premium_icon NRL legend is set for his next chapter

Thurston talks to the NewsMail about life after football

Controversial 1770 development decision spurs robust debate

premium_icon Controversial 1770 development decision spurs robust debate

Councillors vote to approve 1770 development despite reservations.

Local Partners