Men jailed over fatal drug deal stabbing

·2-min read

Two men used knives they bought on their way to a drug deal to kill a 53-year-old who planned to spend $10,000 on meth.

Beau Andrew John Smith, 29, and Kye Enright, 24, had assumed they were going to sell methamphetamine to two women, but late in negotiations discovered a man was involved.

That man, Paul Rock, died from 16 stab wounds when the meeting in the car park of the Plainland Hotel, an hour west of Brisbane, descended into violence after about 15 minutes on July 1, 2019.

Mr Rock had $10,000 to spend on meth and was unable to source it from his usual supplier.

But he became increasingly angered by delays and changes to the plan, telling a third party he was no longer prepared to pay full price, Brisbane Supreme Court Justice Peter Flanagan said in sentencing Smith and Enright on Thursday over Mr Rock's killing.

Concerned the deal might be a set-up or not go according to plan, Smith and Enright stopped on the way at a supermarket to buy two knives and - so as not to raise suspicions - tongs.

After meeting at 5.35pm the group consumed liquid GHB drawn from a jerry can with a syringe and the three men consumed meth to "test the product".

An altercation captured on CCTV and lasting about 40 seconds started about 5.50pm when Enright struck Mr Rock to the head twice.

But he soon seemed to be overpowered by the older man.

Smith ran to the car, grabbing a large kitchen knife they had bought earlier, before stabbing Mr Rock in the upper thigh, pausing and then knifing him again.

Hotel staff found Mr Rock's body after Smith and Enright drove away from the scene.

Mr Rock sustained 16 stab wounds, but Justice Flanagan accepted Smith bought knives only when he thought the deal might go awry, armed himself when Mr Rock was getting the better of Enright and did not stab in a single frenzy but rather intervened four times.

"After delivering a number of blows you move back and briefly assess the situation," Justice Flanagan said.

Smith was sentenced to nine years in jail after pleading guilty to manslaughter and given a parole eligibility date in May 2027.

Enright received an eight-year term of imprisonment for manslaughter, with a parole eligibility date of July 31, 2023.

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