Media Release: Eight charged following joint taskforce operation
Release Date: Saturday, October 27 2012, 01:00 PM
This is a joint media release between the AFP, Australian Crime Commission and Victoria Police
A multi-agency taskforce has arrested eight people and shut down two clandestine laboratories in Melbourne’s western suburbs.
Victoria Police and Australian Federal Police (AFP) executed warrants at two addresses in Sunshine West yesterday afternoon following breakthrough intelligence provided by the Australian Crime Commission (ACC).
Both properties contain clandestine laboratories, with one believed to be amongst the largest ever located in Victoria.
Seven men were arrested and subsequently charged with manufacture and traffick large commercial quantity of methylamphetamine.
Those charged are aged between 26 and 44 and include a Vietnamese national, two Canadian nationals, one man from New South Wales and three men from South Australia.
All faced an out of sessions court hearing overnight and have been remanded in custody to appear at Melbourne Magistrates’ Court on Monday.
A 31-year-old Derrimut man has also been arrested and is currently assisting investigators with their enquiries.
The arrests follow a Joint Organised Crime Taskforce (JOCTF) investigation into the manufacture and interstate trafficking of commercial quantities of methylamphetamine.
The JOCTF is comprised of members from Victoria Police, the Australian Crime Commissioner (ACC), the AFP and the Australian Customs and Border Protection Service.
ACC Executive Director Paul Jevtovic said today’s disruptions were a significant success in the fight against organised crime.
“Not only has the intelligence and subsequent investigative operations dismantled two very dangerous clandestine laboratories operating in Melbourne’s residential streets, it has also successfully dismantled an entire organised criminal syndicate from head to toe,” Mr Jevtovic said.
Victoria Police Assistant Commissioner (Crime) Steve Fontana said the result highlighted the importance of working collaboratively to target organised crime.
“We know that drugs are an issue that all law enforcement agencies are dealing with across Australia and it is vital that we continue to work together to target those who are involved in the manufacture and distribution of these substances,” AC Fontana said.
“Police will continue to target those who trade in illicit drugs and the Victorian community should be aware that we will not tolerate this type of activity.”
AFP Manager Melbourne Office Commander Scott Lee said this investigation was yet another win for the collaborative efforts of law enforcement.
“Eight arrests is an extremely positive outcome for the JOCTF. This is another excellent example of the results achieved thus far by the Victorian-based JOCTF working in partnership to dismantle organised crime syndicates,” Commander Lee said.
AFP National Media (02) 6131 6333
Victoria Police Media (03) 9247 5205
ACC Media 02 6243 6843