An Australian joint taskforce has seized 585 km of methamphetamine, known as Ice, worth up to 438 million AU dollars (448 million U.S. dollars) during an operation in Sydney, the Australian Federal Police (AFP) said on Thursday.
In a joint statement released on Thursday, the AFP said the record Ice haul was seized in Sydney as police executed six search warrants across Sydney suburbs of Regents Park, Bexley North, Wakeley, Canley Heights, Beverly Hills and Ryde.
“This is the largest single seizure of Ice in Australian law enforcement history and almost doubles the previous record seizure of 300 kilograms in July 2012,” the AFP said.
The AFP and New South Wales Police Force arrested a 21-year-old man from Sydney, a 32-year-old Singaporean national and a 51-year- old man from Hong Kong in relation to the seizure on Wednesday, when attempting to take possession of the drugs. The three are expected to face Sydney Central Local Court Thursday. The AFP said the taskforce comprising officers from the AFP, Customs, NSW Police and the Australian Crime Commission launched an investigation into a possible drug importation in September 2012, following a tip-off from a member of the public.
“This operation demonstrates that the AFP and its partners have the capability to detect and dismantle the most sophisticated organized crime groups,” AFP Commissioner Tony Negus said in a statement. NSW Police Commissioner Andrew Scipione said the NSW police Asian Crime Squad first began investigating the matter and carried out vital investigative ground work.
“Our combined resources and talents have resulted in what is clearly a very significant seizure of drugs, and the arrests of people we will allege were involved in importing them to Australia, “ Scipione said.