Man extradited from ACT; assets seized as part of ongoing multi-agency investigation into large-scale drug syndicate across NSW

Wednesday, 10 July 2024 09:52:22 AM

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Police have extradited a man from the ACT and seized a further vehicle - suspected of being the proceeds of serious crime - as part of a multi-agency investigation into the manufacturing and supply of illicit drugs.

In March 2024, officers attached to State Crime Command’s Raptor Squad and Lake Illawarra Police District – as well as the NSW Crime Commission, Australian Border Force (ABF) and Queensland Police Service – commenced an investigation under Strike Force Culti into the manufacturing and supply of MDMA across eastern Australia.

Following extensive investigations, investigators executed ten search warrants in the Lake Illawarra and Tweed Heads regions, seizing over $3 million worth of MDMA and a large clandestine laboratory was located in a Kingscliff home.

Five men were charged last month and remain before the courts.

As part of the ongoing investigation, investigators attached to State Crime Command’s Raptor Squad and the NSW Crime Commission executed a criminal assets recovery search warrant at a home in Albion Park just before 8am on Thursday (4 July 2024).

During the search, officers seized electronic devices, documentation and a 2022 Tesla model Y.

Following further inquiries, investigators executed a search warrant at a Springrange property, near the ACT, about 6am yesterday (Tuesday 9 July 2024).

The residential premises and a large shed were forensically examined with the assistance of specialist police from the State Crime Command’s Chemical Operations Team and Police Rescue, with clothing and handwritten notes seized along with soil samples and chemical swabs.

Shortly after, with the assistance of ACT Policing, investigators also executed a search warrant at a home in Lyons in the ACT, seizing mobile phones and keys. The seized items will undergo forensic examination.

The occupant, a 23-year-old man was arrested by virtue of an outstanding NSW arrest warrant.

NSW Raptor Squad Detectives applied for, and were granted, the man’s extradition in the ACT Magistrate’s Court.

He was escorted to Queanbeyan Police Station where the outstanding warrant was executed, and he was charged with two counts of possess precursor intend to use in manufacture/production and participate criminal group contribute criminal activity.

The man appeared before Queanbeyan Local Court yesterday where he was granted conditional bail to appear before the same court on Monday 5 August 2024.

Investigations under Strike Force Culti continue.

Anyone with information that may assist investigators is urged to contact Crime Stoppers: 1800 333 000 or https://nsw.crimestoppers.com.au. Information is treated in strict confidence. The public is reminded not to report information via NSW Police social media pages.