A prominent businessman-turned-drug dealer, who once hosted Prince Charles and Princess Diana, has been told he has to stay in a WA jail.
A convicted drug dealer, who once hosted Prince Charles and Princess Diana at his home, was mistakenly released on parole in Perth after being transferred from a Queensland prison.
Dino Joseph Antonio Diano was sentenced to seven years’ jail in 2010 after pleading guilty to supplying 4.53 kilograms of methamphetamine.
In early 2013, Diano was granted a transfer from Queensland to serve the rest of his sentence in Western Australia, where he had made his home before his arrest.
But court documents reveal he was then granted parole by WA authorities in May, before they realised they had released Diano two years early, and issued a warrant for his arrest.
The chairman of WA’s parole board, Robert Cock, admitted the board should not have released Diano on parole because he was not eligible until 2015.
But after the 65-year-old was returned to prison, he appealed against the decision.
In the WA Court of Appeal on Wednesday, Justice Andrew Beech confirmed that after Diano’s transfer to WA, his earliest parole date was in May 2015, and he had to stay in prison.
“The board had no power to make a parole order in May 2013,” Justice Beech said.
The bungle came about because of the different parole systems in the two states.
Before his drug conviction, Diano was a prominent businessman in Alice Springs, where he offered the use of his house and pool to the travelling royals during their tour of Australia in 1983.
However, after his business collapsed, Diano moved to Queensland where he made criminal connections, which led to his arrest and ultimate conviction.