Home$90 million of meth found imported to Melbourne in a dough mixing...

$90 million of meth found imported to Melbourne in a dough mixing machine



A multi-agency investigation has uncovered a huge plot to import drugs from North America to Victoria.

A multi-agency investigation has uncovered a major drug importation operation in Melbourne, arresting three men and seizing nearly $90 million worth of methamphetamine.

The joint operation between Australia and Canada allegedly discovered 140 kgs of the drug concealed in a dough mixing machine.

The investigation began in Toronto, where authorities were alerted to a suspicious cargo shipment bound for the Victorian capital.

Officers allegedly found the drugs inside the catering equipment and launched the multi-agency investigation to monitor the shipment as it made its way to Melbourne.

Police will allege it arrived in Australia in early October but the “sophisticated” drug importation operation moved the prized haul to a number of locations, which police deemed was an attempt by the group to see if authorities were tracking it.

On Wednesday, officers swarmed on the group and arrested three men — aged 29, 33 and 37 — and executed seven search warrants in Keilor East, Williamstown, Ravenhall, Bonnie Brook, Maribyrnong, Sunbury and West Footscray.

As well as the massive haul of methamphetamines, officers allegedly seized more than $1.5 million in cash, various other drug stashes, firearms, ammunition, a motorbike, and a used drug laboratory at a rural address containing drug manufacturing equipment.

Australian Federal Police hailed the operation’s success on strong local and international partnerships, given the participation of Canadian law enforcements as well as a number of local agencies, including AFP, Victoria Police, Australian Border Force, Australian Criminal Intelligence Commission and Department of Home Affairs.

“Together we share intelligence and help investigate the activities of transnational and serious organised crime syndicates, with the assistance of the AFP International Network and its Liaison Officers based in posts around the world,” assistant commissioner Krissy Barrett said.

Victorian top cop Mick Frewen said the discovery of the huge drug plot was evidence the state was dealing with organised crime syndicates with major international reach.

“We want to make it as difficult as possible for these syndicates to bring harm to Victoria and create an environment where they should expect to be targeted and held to account,” the crime command acting assistant commissioner said.

“To be able to make these arrests and seizures at this time also highlights the continued local demand there is for a range of drugs even during the pandemic.

“Victoria Police will continue to work with our law enforcement partners to ensure those who bring that harm to our state are held to account, and that these criminal syndicates are strongly and deliberately targeted.”

The group of men faced the Melbourne Magistrates Court via video link on Wednesday and were remanded in custody.

A 37-year-old from Sunbury Downs was charged with attempting to import a commercial quantity of border controlled drugs, attempting to possess a commercial quantity of border controlled drugs and committing an indictable offence while on bail.

A Keilor East man, 29, was charged with attempting to possess a commercial quantity of border controlled drugs and attempting to traffick a commercial quantity of border controlled drugs.

A 33-year-old from Bonnie Brook was charged with attempting to import a commercial quantity of border controlled drugs and attempting to possess a commercial quantity of border controlled drugs.

The trio will remain behind bars before their next appearance at the Melbourne Magistrates Court on March 23.

Read related topics:Melbourne




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