Qld mum jailed for helping fugitive son

·1-min read

An alleged drug smuggler's mother has been jailed for helping him flee Australia.

Elizabeth Anne Turner told a court she believed her son had taken his own life when he disappeared in 2015 shortly before he was due to face trial on drug charges.

But after a nine-day trial a jury last year found Turner guilty of one count of attempting to pervert justice and three counts of giving a false testimony.

Her son Markis Scott Turner was arrested in 2011 over allegations he was part of a suspected drug smuggling ring that planned to import a 50-kilogram shipment of cocaine into Australia.

The now 66-year-old had provided surety of $450,000 and $70,000 cash as part of her son's bail conditions.

Turner later fought an application for her to fulfil her obligations as surety saying she believed her son had taken his own life.

Last year's trial in Mackay found she had aided her son to flee Australia and helped him to remain at large.

Turner provided money for her son to buy a yacht, and also travelled with his wife and children to Poland, District Court Judge Suzanne Sheridan said.

She said Turner's lies may not have resulted in any gain, but her conduct was designed "to avoid a significant financial loss ... and it was designed to avoid your son's capture".

"I accept that you were placed in the position where, out of love for your son, you assisted him to escape," Judge Sheridan told Turner in handing down the sentence.

Markis Turner was later detained in the Philippines.

Turner was sentenced to a head sentence of four years in prison.

She has to serve two years in custody before being eligible for parole.