Media Release: Cocaine in chocolate seized at Sydney Airport
Release Date: Tuesday, January 26 2016, 03:15 PM
This is a joint media release between the Australian Federal Police and the Australian Border Force.
A 27-year-old Malaysian man has appeared before the Parramatta Local Court today, charged with importing approximately 4.7 kilograms of cocaine in boxes of chocolate.
Australian Border Force (ABF) officers identified the man when he arrived at Sydney International Airport on a flight from the United Arab Emirates yesterday (25 January).
The officers examined the man’s bags which contained four boxes of chocolates and a container of alcohol. When the officers opened the boxes they uncovered pellets inside, with initial testing confirming the pellets were positive for cocaine. Further testing will be conducted to determine the exact weight and purity of the substance.
The matter was subsequently referred to the Australian Federal Police (AFP) for investigation.
AFP Members attended Sydney International Airport, and placed the man under arrest. He was conveyed to Mascot Police station where he was charged with:
- Importing a commercial quantity of border controlled drugs, namely cocaine, contrary to Section 307.1 of the Criminal Code Act (Cth) 1995
Police enquiries into this importation are continuing.
ABF Regional Commander NSW Tim Fitzgerald said this wasn’t the first time officers had come across such creative attempts to smuggle drugs into the country, with the ABF having specialist capabilities to detect illicit drugs in the various ways traffickers are now using.
“More and more we are seeing people try to evade detection by concealing drugs in an interesting way. From food packets and toys, to books and tools, criminals can be very creative in their attempts to get these dangerous drugs into Australia.”
“What is important is that through the continued efforts of Australian law enforcement, we stop all drug importation, regardless of how big or small, to prevent these dangerous drugs from reaching our community and the harm they could cause,” Commander Fitzgerald said.
AFP Sydney Airport Police Commander Sharon Cowden said that the AFP’s highest priority will always be community safety, and it will continue to work with its partner agencies to target those looking to profit from illicit drugs and organised crime.
“The Australian public should rest assured that the AFP is focused on bringing those who continue to think they are above the law to justice,” Commander Cowden said.
“The AFP is continuing to make enquiries into this importation and we are committed to disrupting the activities of criminal syndicates attempting to bring these dangerous drugs to Australia. This successful seizure and arrest should send a clear message to those attempting to exploit our community.”
The maximum penalty for this offence is life imprisonment.
AFP National Media: 02 6131 6333
ABF Media: 02 6264 2244