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Police raid more than 20 hydro houses in one week - Strike Force Zambesi

Friday, 09 June 2017 03:59:48 AM

Investigators from Strike Force Zambesi have executed 23 search warrants in one week, seizing 2,490 cannabis plants worth over $7 million.

The operation, which targets the indoor cultivation of cannabis plants within the south west metropolitan region of Sydney, is carried out by the officers of the Region Enforcement Squads of Wetherill Park and Bass Hill.

A 43-year-old woman is before the courts following a search warrant at a home in Fairfield West on Tuesday (6 June 2017).

Officers allegedly located and seized 58 cannabis plants inside the property while four children were also present in the home at the time of the search.

Following inquiries, a 45-year-old man attended Fairfield Police Station yesterday (Thursday 8 June 2017) and was arrested in connection with this search warrant. Charges are expected to be laid.

Another three search warrants were executed yesterday (Thursday 8 June 2017); one at Carramar, one at Liverpool and another at Beverley Hills.

Officers at the Carramar search warrant seized 258 cannabis plants with an estimated potential street value of $747,000. A man was arrested at the scene and was released pending further inquiries.

A 50-year-old man was arrested at a home in Elizabeth Drive, Liverpool. Officers there located 109 cannabis plants with an estimated potential street value of $314,000.

He was charged with cultivate prohibited plant (commercial quantity) and steal electricity and was refused bail to appear at Liverpool Local Court today (Friday 9 June 2017).

A 29-year-old man was arrested during a search warrant at Beverley Hills and is presently assisting police with inquiries at Campsie Police Station.

Since its formation in April 2011, Strike Force Zambesi officers have seized over 58,000 cannabis plants, with an estimated potential street value over $162 million.

Over 800 kilograms of cannabis head have also been seized with an estimated potential street value of $6.9 million.

Over 200 people have been arrested to date with over 500 criminal charges laid.

South West Metropolitan Region Commander, Assistant Commissioner Frank Mennilli, said with the increased number of search warrants being undertaken, cannabis cultivators should expect to get caught.

“Strike Force Zambesi investigators are very pleased with their achievements to date, but our efforts to uncover and destroy illegal drugs in the region will continue,” Assistant Commissioner Mennilli said.

“In just one week, we have destroyed more than $7 million of cannabis and cannabis products to reduce the influence of criminal gangs and their illegal activities across Sydney.

“We will continue to uncover and destroy cannabis crops across the region, target drug supply and associated crimes.

“My officers will ensure that anyone involved in criminal activity in Sydney’s south-west will feel the full extent of the law,” A/C Mennilli said.

Further investigations are continuing and anyone with information about the cultivation/manufacture, supply or possession of prohibited drugs is urged to contact their local police or Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.