Joint Media Release: Australian Customs and Border Protection Service and Australian Federal Police
17 May 2013
Two men charged with importing 72 litres of methamphetamine
A joint Australian Federal Police (AFP) and Australian Customs and Border Protection Service (ACBPS) operation has resulted in approximately 72 litres of methamphetamine being stopped from entering Australia.
The operation began last weekend when ACBPS officers intercepted the liquid in a consignment of hairdressing equipment from China.
Intelligence received by ACBPS led to officers examining a pallet of shampoo, conditioner and hair colouring products. Initial testing indicated the presence of methamphetamine.
An AFP examination of the consignment confirmed that it contained approximately 72 litres of liquid methamphetamine, with a total potential street value of up to $43 million.
A controlled delivery of the consignment was conducted this week which led to two men being arrested earlier this morning (17 May 2013).
A 35-year-old man and a 43-year-old man, both Hong Kong nationals, have been charged with attempt to possess a commercial quantity of border controlled drugs, namely methamphetamine, contrary to Section 307.5 of the Criminal Code Act 1995.
ACBPS Manager NSW Container Examination Facility Paul Willard said these arrests were yet another example of the success of the Service's intelligence-led approach to targeting containers arriving in sea cargo.
"We are alert to the different ways criminals conceal these dangerous drugs in their attempts to evade detection," Mr Willard said.
"Criminals should be aware we have the examination skills, supported by cutting edge technology, to detect even the most sophisticated concealments."
AFP Sydney office Manager Ray Johnson said that these arrests are a strong reminder that you have a high chance of being caught if you attempt to import illicit drugs into Australia.
"Despite efforts by criminal networks to evade detection, authorities are working together to identify and disrupt criminals who attempt to import drugs," Commander Johnson said.
"The size of this seizure and the amount of harm it could potentially have caused cannot be understated."
The maximum penalty for these offences is life imprisonment and/or a $1,275,000 fine.
The investigation is continuing, and further arrests have not been ruled out.
AFP National Media (02) 6131 6333
ACBPS Media (02) 6275 6793
Media note: Images of the seizure are available in the image gallery on the Australian Customs and Border Protection Service website. Please attribute images to: Australian Customs and Border Protection Service.