Bartholomew Rizzo

Address: Mill Park, Victoria, Australia
Age: 45
Sex: Male
Occupation: Sales person


Date: 9 February 2009
Charges: trafficking, dealing with proceeds of crime
Category: Drug related
Court: Supreme Court of Victoria
Judge: Judge King
Penalty: 16 years' imprisonment

Bartholomew Rizzo pleaded guilty to four counts, being three of trafficking, and one of dealing with proceeds of crime. The offences occurred from at least 1 January 2006 to 5 June 2007.

Rizzo was one of the members of the biggest drug organisation in Australia organized by Antonios Mokbel which ran from 2006 to 2007. Known as "The Company", it involved in the manufacture and distribution of very large quantities of methylamphetamine, the trafficking of cocaine, MDMA and money laundering. There were at least 10 people who have been identified as members of “The Company”, being Mokbel, Rizzo, Joseph Mansour, George Elias, Chafic Issa, Christopher Ferraro, David Tricarico, Andrew Ryan, Robert Benedetti and Jamie Saro.

Mansour was described as being Mokbel’s right hand man while Rizzo as Mokbel’s left hand man. Rizzo’s involvement was attached to the financial side, although he also participated in many other aspects of the business.

Mokbel organised through Rizzo and Mansour, and also independently through other members of the organisation, for the manufacture of methylamphetamine. The manufactured methylamphetamine was then sold to “The Company”, who at that point consisted of Rizzo and Mansour, who then had to on sell the drug to various people and account for the money that was made. The profits made from the on selling of the drug were to be divided between Rizzo and Mansour alone.

Rizzo and other company members ran “The Company” as if it were a legitimate business. Rizzo either assisted with the manufacture by giving directions, or paying money out on behalf of Mokbel to others to whom he had given orders and then when the manufacturing process was complete he brought the finished product and other available drugs. Rizzo, together with other members of “The Company” monitored the quality of the drugs; stored, cut, repackaged and marketed the drugs. Rizzo kept a book of account on organisation’s customers and financial transactions. Money paid out to various members of “The Company” were itemised as expenses in the books of account. Transactions if the organisation totalled to more than $4,000,000.

Rizzo and other members of “The Company” were arrested on June 5, 2007 but initially denied their involvement in the crime.

Rizzo has no prior convictions.

Judge King said that the offending was at a very high level in respect of trafficking of drugs at a large commercial quantity and added that Rizzo deserves punishment for being involved in large drug organisation.

Judge King sentenced Rizzo to 16 years' imprisonment with a non-parole period of 13 years.