Australian authorities seize 400 kg of meth found inside hot chili sauce shipment
Topics: AUSTRALIA METH
According to the Australian Border Force (ABF) four men have now been charged in relation to the spicy cargo consignment, with investigators tracking the alleged organized crime syndicate for over a year.
Beginning back in September 2018, the New South Wales (NSW) State Crime Command's Organized Crime Squad and the NSW Crime Commission established Strike Force Diffey to investigate coordinated money laundering operations across the harbour city, along with the importation of illegal narcotics.
As part of this investigation, ABF officers targeted an air consignment from the United States, which landed in Sydney on October 15.
Closely examining the 768 bottles of hot chili sauce, preliminary testing found the presents of methylamphetamine, known locally as the drug ice.
Estimated to have a street value of around 300 million Australian dollars (208 million U.S. dollars), Acting ABF Regional Commander for NSW Matt O'Connor said the seizure has prevented approximately 4 million hits of ice hitting the streets.
As result of further inquiries, strike force detectives arrested a 36-year-old man at a Western Sydney home on October 20.
The following day, investigators also arrested two other men, aged 30 and 34, in the carpark of a Sydney hotel.
Following the execution of a number of search warrants at various locations, police took on Thursday a fourth man, aged 45, into custody after arresting him outside a home in Sydney's Inner West. ■