Large drug bust in Perth seizes $66 million worth of Ice

A 22-year-old Chinese national has been arrested and 26.4 kilograms of crystal methamphetamine has been seized in Perth following a joint agency investigation to reduce the flow of ice into Western Australia.

This seizure has a potential street value of up to $66 million and was the result of an investigation by the Joint Organised Crime Taskforce which involves WA Police, the Australian Federal Police, the Australian Crime Commission, Australian Border Force and the Australian Transactions Reports and Analysis Centre.

This seizure is the largest seizure of meth by the WA Joint Taskforce.

The investigation culminated in a search warrant at a hotel in Perth’s CBD yesterday afternoon (9 February, 2016), which uncovered 14 vacuum sealed bags containing a white crystalline substance, believed to be methamphetamine. Scales, phones and a small amount of cash were also seized during the search warrant.

A 22-year-old man was arrested at the scene and later charged with possessing a prohibited drug with intent to sell or supply, contrary to Section 6(1) of the Misuse of Drugs Act 1981 (WA).

He was scheduled to appear before Perth Magistrates Court today (Wednesday, 10 February 2016).

AFP State Manager Western Australia Commander Matt Rippon praised the work of all agencies involved in this operation.

“By stopping these drugs reaching the streets, we have today saved over a quarter of million deals of the drug wreaking havoc across our community,” Commander Rippon said.

WA Police Acting Assistant Commissioner (State Crime) Pryce Scanlan said the harms associated with meth were well documented and seizures such as this one were significant for the Western Australia community.

“Asian organised crime continues to have a significant impact on the importation and distribution of meth in Western Australia. They are affecting our State and taking advantage of the vulnerable in our community,” Mr Scanlan said.

“WA Police are working closely with other law enforcement agencies. Since commencing operation in April 2015, the WA JOCTF has seized 75kg of methamphetamine and charged 29 people with offences related to importing and distributing drugs in our community.”

Australian Crime Commission WA State Manager Doug Miller said that the ACC has assessed that methylamphetamine poses—by far—the greatest threat to the Australian public of all illicit drug types.

“The results achieved from joint operations such as this one demonstrate our commitment to work together to detect and disrupt this illicit market.”

The JOCTF is comprised of specialists from the Australian Federal Police (AFP), Western Australia Police (WAPOL), Australian Crime Commission (ACC), Australian Border Force (ABF) and the Australian Transaction Reports and Analysis Centre (AUSTRAC), working together to target organised crime in Western Australia.

Media enquiries
AFP National Media: (02) 6131 6333
WA Police Media: (08) 9222 1550
Australian Crime Commission media: (03) 8636 0500
Australian Border Force media: (02) 02 6264 2244
AUSTRAC media: (03) 8636 0500

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