(LAWFUEL) – A two-year operation by the Australian Federal Police (AFP) has ended after the arrest in Australia, of a man alleged to be the head of a transnational drug trafficking syndicate spanning three continents.
The man was formally charged on 26 December and is due to face Melbourne
Magistrates Court today, following his extradition from the Netherlands to Australia. The man is alleged to have headed a syndicate operating out of Australia, Canada and the Netherlands by conspiring to import cocaine using a large network of couriers internally concealing the drugs. The AFP’s National Manager Border International Tim Morris said the effort and persistence from the AFP and its international law enforcement partners in Canada, Thailand and the Netherlands had disrupted the activities of a global drug trafficking syndicate. “The commitment by these AFP investigators and their international counterparts led to the arrest of a key player in this global drug syndicate,” Assistant Commissioner Morris said. “This syndicate targets people who are vulnerable either financially or because of their own drug dependency, to participate in the extremely risky and dangerous method of swallowing drug parcels for concealment from authorities.”
To date, twelve people have been arrested in Australia and overseas in
connection with this syndicate. This arrest is another example of the success as a result of the collaborative approach between the AFP and Customs in protecting Australia’s borders.
The maximum penalty for this offence is a fine of $550,000 and/or 25 years imprisonment.