Two men accused of being part of a conspiracy to import half a tonne of cocaine into Australia from Papua New Guinea argue the case against them is weak.
Pierino Forni and Salvatore Formica were ordered to be extradited to Queensland last month over allegations they were part of a plot exposed after a plane full of cocaine crashed earlier this year.
A magistrate denied their first bid to make their own way to Queensland to face court, so they've asked Supreme Court Justice Elizabeth Hollingworth to reconsider.
In July a plane overloaded with cocaine crashed shortly after taking off from a PNG airstrip.
The two men were among five arrested by investigators and charged over an alleged conspiracy to import more than 500kg of cocaine, estimated to be worth $80 million, from PNG to Australia.
Barrister Ian Hill QC said case was "far from overwhelming" and a brief of evidence against the men was six months away.
He described 61-year-old Forni as an "elderly" man with no prior convictions who suffers severe and potentially life-threatening illnesses including significant heart failure and the high risk of a stroke.
Both men are charged with conspiring to import a commercial quantity of cocaine.
Separately Forni is accused of dealing in more than $1 million in proceeds of crime, allegedly money filtered through a company called Australian Cricket Bat that he was a director of.
Mr Hill said Forni didn't have access to the accounts.
It's also alleged he was involved in arranging flights between Victoria and Queensland and arranging plane repairs.
If Forni had done those things there was nothing but inference to suggest Forni was involved in any agreement to import cocaine.
Formica, who has a two-week-old baby, is also facing a separate charge of importing cocaine in 2018.
His barrister Robert Richter QC said investigators had to draw a long bow of assumptions to claim Formica's involvement - including a phone pinging off towers near an airport, placing it within 600 square kilometres of that airport.
He said information gathered about the conspiracy was retrospective, taking a life of its own after the plane crashed.
Prosecutor Krista Breckweg said it wasn't for Victoria to determine long-term because the pair were to face trial in Queensland.
If they were granted bail it would be revoked when they arrived in Queensland and they'd be allowed to apply again there, she said.
Mr Richter hit out at the lack of consistency between states, given the men are charged with commonwealth offences.
"We are a federation, these are federal laws ... what is needed is uniformity," he said.
Justice Elizabeth Hollingworth has asked for more submissions and the case will continue on September 14.
The men remain in custody.