A champion bodybuilder has vowed to fight charges that he was
behind a nationwide steroid dealing operation.
Phil Musson, 44, appeared in court last week accused of being
a "significant importer, manufacturer and supplier" of
performance and image enhancing drugs, including anabolic
Court documents allege the professional personal trainer was
selling his own brand of performance and image-enhancing
products that he made himself and packaged up in pills and
He was back in Christchurch District Court today to indicate
not guilty pleas to seven charges of selling various tablets
and vials under a 'Phoenix Biotech' brand before "provisional
consent of the Minister of Health to the distribution of that
medicine had been notified in the Gazette".
Musson, of Bishopdale in Christchurch, was remanded on bail
for a status hearing next month.
No pleas were entered to 291 original charges of charges of
possession and supplying performance and image enhancing
drugs, which were laid in May.
Police opposed bail at Musson's last court appearance, saying
he had offended while on bail.
Defence counsel Pip Hall today denied that was the case, but
in any event, his client had had his court obligations
"brought home to him" after spending six days in custody.
Mr Hall applied for bail, saying the charges, brought by the
Ministry of Health who helped police lay them under the
Medicines Act 1981, were not likely to result in a jail
sentence if proven.
He also argued that the drugs involved were merely "not
gazetted substances", making them very different from drugs
under the Misuse of Drugs Act.
The police and Crown prosecutor Anselm Williams, representing
the Ministry of Health, did not oppose bail today.
Judge Raoul Neave granted him bail, with special conditions,
but warned Musson he was "on notice", and any further
offending would see him back behind bars.
Musson was named Mr New Zealand Athletic at the 2005 national
championships, crowned Mr Christchurch Physique 2009 and
competed in last year's National Amateur Bodybuilding
Association Asia Pacific Bodybuilding champs.