$1 billion meth bust breaks record
We're in Perth talking about Australia's largest meth seizure, at 1.2 tonnes https://t.co/8tkK5q5sdH— AFP (@AusFedPolice) December 22, 2017
POLICE have seized more than 1 tonne of methamphetamine in Australia's largest drug bust.
Eight people have been charged over the $1.04 billion haul.
AFP Deputy Commissioner Operations Leanne Close said in a press conference multiple warrants were executed across the country over 24 hours, including the raid on a boat docked in the town of Geraldton, and a vehicle allegedly loaded with drugs from the boat.
Police said the drug haul could have fetched more than $1 billion if it had been allowed to hit Australian streets.
"Police will allege in court a marine vessel, the Valkoista, arrived at the Port of Geraldton, WA, around 2am WST yesterday," the AFP said in a joint statement issued on Friday morning.
"Police will allege the drugs were then offloaded into a white hire van shortly before 4am WST. Tactical response police officers intercepted the van as it reversed from the dock. Police arrested the three occupants of the van: a 33-year-old man from southern Sydney and two men from NSW, aged 38 and 52.
"Simultaneously, police boarded the Valkoista and arrested three crew members onboard: a 45-year-old man from the NSW Central Coast and two men from South Australia, aged 48 and 44."
"Fifty-nine bags containing approximately 20 kilograms of methamphetamine were seized from the vehicle. An additional bag containing approximately 20 kilograms of methamphetamine was found on the vessel, bringing the total amount of methamphetamine seized to around 1.2 tonnes. This amount of methamphetamine has an estimated street value of $1.04 billion."
Two other South Australian men aged 37 were later arrested and charged.
Western Australian Police Commissioner Chris Dawson said WA Police worked alongside the AFP, Border Force and others over many months.