Prominent chiropractor Warren Sipser put his “beloved” elderly mum at “great risk” by sending her to pick up $90 million of liquid cocaine.
Prominent chiropractor Warren Sipser put his “beloved” elderly mum at “great risk” by sending her to pick up $90 million of liquid cocaine.

Dodgy doctor sent mum to collect $90m coke haul

A prominent Melbourne chiropractor sent his elderly mum to collect a $90 million haul of liquid cocaine in wine bottles, putting her at "greatest risk".

Dr Warren Sipser, 44, has pleaded guilty to trying to import more than 120kg of cocaine and of possession of a controlled drug after he was caught up in a 2018 police sting.

A plea hearing at the County Court was told Sipser inquired about 600 bottles of South African Nederburg wine on eBay with the username 'drwazzie' in June of that year.

He later paid $3100 AUD for another consignment of the same wine with a different username, set for delivery from South Africa to 'Warren' at Hecho en Mexico restaurant in Bay St, Brighton.

But the delivery, with documents dated eight days before he agreed to buy the wine, was picked up by the cops instead and replaced with replica bottles.

The court was told Sipser distanced himself "completely" from the delivery of the 600 wine bottles, 343 of which contained pure liquid cocaine, by calling his mum and saying he "wouldn't make it in time".

Crown prosecutor Krista Breckweg told the court Sipser called couriers from Crown Casino and redirected the consignment for delivery to the back of his Elwood chiropractic business, where his mother would be waiting.

Warren Sipser with former wife, Andi Lew.
Warren Sipser with former wife, Andi Lew.

Ms Breckweg said that was the point of "greatest risk" and if police were watching and decided to swoop in, his mother would have been caught in the crossfire.

"It would have been her that was arrested, not him," she said.

"Clearly there's trauma associated with that potentially for her."

Sipser's stepfather was "sitting there" for the delivery too, even though the court heard Sipser told his mum for him not to be present.

The haul was later picked up "under the cover of darkness" by two men in a ute, who were arrested on the Hume Highway - believed to be on their way to Sydney.

Defence lawyer Peter Morrissey SC said the chiropractor knew he was part of a "much larger" criminal syndicate.

"It is clear - there must have been, and obviously were," Mr Morrissey said of others involved.

He said his client's cocaine use began following his break up with socialite and wellness advocate Andi Lew, who moved interstate with their son.

He lost "the social scene" he had with Ms Lew, he said, and drugs and scales found at his home during a police raid indicated a "fairly high level of use". Mr Morrissey said Sipser "feels the shame of it" and said he apologised to the court for his offending.

He agreed with the prosecution that "beloved family members could have been caught in the crossfire and got hurt", however, "that's not how he saw it".

Mr Morrissey said his client had been "very close" and "very devoted" to his mother, who he was separated from as a child.

Dr Warren Sipser and Andi Lew at the iSelect Fashion Aid Gala Ball.
Dr Warren Sipser and Andi Lew at the iSelect Fashion Aid Gala Ball.

Sipser, sitting alone in a large blue brick room in Barwon prison, wiped his eyes as Mr Morrisey told the court of his only sister's death from illness as a child.

Wearing a fine cut dark suit and light blue shirt and tie, he heard his lawyer speak of how his mother travelled back and forth to New York in the hope of seeking medical treatment for young Stacey, which was not successful.

"He doesn't want to paint himself as a victim," Mr Morrissey said, while stating that his childhood had been dotted with sad circumstances that forced him to live with his grandparents for a time.

Judge Scott Johns said he would sentence Sipser at a later date, likely in July or August.

"As you and he knows it's high stakes, now he has to pay the price," His Honour said.

The maximum sentence for attempting to import a commercial quantity of drugs is life in prison.

Sipser has pleaded guilty to trying to bring in 60 times the commercial quantity.

ashley.argoon@news.com.au

@ashargoon

Originally published as Dodgy chiro sent mum to collect $90m coke haul