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You are here: Home News and media CMC media releases Joint CMC-NSW Police operation dismantles inter-state drug network — 05.07.2013
You are here: Home News and media CMC media releases Joint CMC-NSW Police operation dismantles inter-state drug network — 05.07.2013
You are here: Home News and media CMC media releases Joint CMC-NSW Police operation dismantles inter-state drug network — 05.07.2013

Joint CMC-NSW Police operation dismantles inter-state drug network — 05.07.2013

A Crime and Misconduct Commission (CMC) and New South Wales Police Force (NSWPF) joint operation has dismantled a Queensland-based crime network responsible for distributing precursor chemicals used in the production of methylamphetamine within New South Wales.

It will be alleged the Queensland-based network was distributing ContacNT, which is sold over the counter throughout Asia. ContacNT can be used to extract pseudoephedrine, which is then used to produce methylamphetamine.

It will be further alleged that a 71-year-old Queensland man acted as a broker, placing orders with importers on behalf of criminal groups within New South Wales, and facilitating the distribution of the imported materials to these groups.

The 10-month joint operation, codenamed Operation Lithium, has resulted in the seizure of eight kilograms of precursor chemicals, which have the potential to produce methylamphetamine with an estimated street value of approximately $1.3 million.*

Yesterday (Thursday 4 July 2013), CMC officers arrested a 71-year-old Kuraby man. He was charged with the following offences:

  • 1 x trafficking in dangerous drugs, contrary to Section 5 of the Qld Drugs Misuse Act (1986)
  • 1 x producing dangerous drugs, contrary to Section 8 of the Qld Drugs Misuse Act (1986)
  • 11 x possessing anything for use in the commission of a crime (namely glassware used in the production of dangerous drugs), contrary to Section 10 (1)(a) of the Qld Drugs Misuse Act (1986)

He appeared in the Brisbane Magistrates Court this morning and was remanded in custody.

New South Wales police, in association with CMC officers, yesterday arrested a 52-year-old Kuraby woman and a 43-year-old Waterford man. The woman was charged with the following New South Wales offences:

  • 2 x Supply Prohibited Drug (Commercial Quantity) Section 25 of the Drug Misuse and Trafficking Act
  • 1 x Supply Prohibited Drug (Indictable Quantity) Section 25 of the Drug Misuse and Trafficking Act
  • 1 x Participate in Criminal Group contrary to section 93T(1) of the Crimes Act, 1900
  • 1 X Knowingly Deal in the Proceeds of Crime contrary to section 193B(2) of the Crimes Act, 1900

The man was charged with the following New South Wales offences:

  • 1 x Supply Prohibited Drug (Large Commercial Quantity)  contrary to Section 25 of the Drug Misuse and Trafficking Act
  • 2 x Supply Prohibited Drug (Commercial Quantity) Section 25 of the Drug Misuse and Trafficking Act
  • 2 x Supply Prohibited Drug (Indictable Quantity) Section 25 of the Drug Misuse and Trafficking Act
  • 1 x Participate in Criminal Group contrary to section 93T(1) of the Crimes Act, 1900
  • 1 X Knowingly Deal in the Proceeds of Crime contrary to section 193B(2) of the Crimes Act, 1900

Both appeared in the Brisbane Magistrates Court this morning. The 52-year-old woman is expected to reappear in the Parramatta District Local Court in three weeks. The 43-year-old man was remanded in custody and will be extradited to New South Wales in the coming days.

The CMC’s Acting Director Crime Operations, Detective Acting Superintendent Lance Vercoe, said the joint law enforcement operation would cut off a source of precursor chemicals, disrupting the production of amphetamines in New South Wales.

“Our message to anyone involved in the importation, production and distribution of illicit drugs is simple. State boundaries provide you with no protection from law enforcement and we will continue to work in partnership with our inter-state colleagues to locate and arrest those responsible for the manufacture and distribution of drugs wherever that occurs.”

New South Wales Police Drug Squad Commander Detective Superintendent Nick Bingham said this operation sent a clear message to those involved in the selling and manufacture of illicit drugs.

"We work together with State and Federal agencies on a regular basis," Detective Superintendent  Bingham said.

"This strong law enforcement partnership has been responsible for dismantling a significant established distribution network allegedly responsible for the distribution of large quantities of prohibited drugs and precursor chemicals along the eastern seaboard of Australia.”

Investigations into the trafficking of precursor chemicals and methamphetamines between Queensland and New South Wales are continuing.

*Correction: The street value of methylamphetamine able to be produced by the precursor chemicals seized was amended on 20 August 2014 to correct the figure.

Last updated: 20 August 2014
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