Two men charged for allegedly importing cocaine tablets

This is a joint media release issued by the Australian Federal Police and Australian Border Force.

Two United States nationals are scheduled to appear in Melbourne Magistrate’s Court today (Saturday, 2 April 2016) charged with attempting to import a quantity of cocaine tablets through the international mail system.

On Thursday, 24 March 2016, a consignment arrived at the Melbourne Gateway Facility from the United States, and was selected for examination by Australian Border Force (ABF) officers. The consignment was found to contain eight commercially sealed plastic vitamin tubs filled with white tablets. Initial testing of the tablets returned a positive result for cocaine, with a total weight of about five kilograms.

On Monday, 28 March 2016, a second consignment arrived at the Melbourne Gateway Facility from the United States. It also contained eight commercially sealed plastic vitamin tubs. The tubs held a quantity of white tablets which, when tested, also returned a positive result for cocaine and weighed around five kilograms.

Further testing will be conducted to determine the exact weight and purity of the drugs seized.

The matter was referred to the Australian Federal Police (AFP). Yesterday (Friday, 1 April 2016), AFP officers conducted a controlled delivery of one of the consignments to an address in Preston, Victoria. A 32-year-old man and a 33-year-old man, both citizens of the United States, were subsequently arrested.

The 32-year-old man has been charged with two counts of attempting to import a commercial quantity of a border controlled drug, namely cocaine, under section 307.1 of the Criminal Code Act (Cth) 1995, and one count of attempting to possess a commercial quantity of unlawfully imported border controlled drug, namely cocaine, under section 307.5 of theCriminal Code Act (Cth) 1995.

The 33-year-old man has been charged with one count of attempting to import a commercial quantity of a border controlled drug, namely cocaine, under section 307.1 of the Criminal Code Act (Cth) 1995, and one count of attempting to possess a commercial quantity of unlawfully imported border controlled drug, namely cocaine, under section 307.5 of theCriminal Code Act (Cth) 1995.

The maximum penalty for these offences is life imprisonment.

AFP Commander Paul Osborne, Manger Crime Operations, said the AFP and ABF would continue to target those seeking to use the mail stream for criminal activities.

“The AFP will continue to work with its domestic and international partners to detect and prosecute those who attempt to traffic drugs,” Commander Osborne said.

“This seizure should send a strong message to criminals that no matter the means or method of drug concealment, you will be caught.”

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