Joint Organised Crime Group (JOCG) charged four people for their alleged involvement in the importation and manufacture of 720 liter methylamphetamine. The drugs seized has an estimated street value of billion dollars.
On realising major supply of drugs from Asia to Australia, JOCG initiated Operation OVCHARKA. This was to find out channels and people involved in the drug trade between Asia and Australia.
As a follow up in December 2015 the JOCG executed four search warrants at storage facilities in Hurstville, Rockdale, Miranda and Padstow. This resulted in the seizure of 530 litres of liquid methylamphetamine concealed in art supplies and 2kg crystallised methylamphetamine. Though importers may have used services of Sydney customs broker, details are not known.
A consignment from Hong Kong at the NSW Container Examination Facility was examined by Australian Border Force (ABF) in December 2015. ABF recovered 190 liters of liquid methylamphetamine concealed inside thousands of silicon bra inserts in 86 boxes.
A controlled delivery of the consignment in January 2016 to a storage facility in Burwood resulted in the arrest of a 33-year-old from Hong Kong. He was charged with importing a border controlled drug, contrary to Section 307.1 of the Commonwealth Criminal Code Act 1995.
Following this the JOCG also found out evidence of drug manufacturing at two Sydney residences in Hurstville and Campsie. These places are alleged to be linked to the liquid methylamphetamine seized in art supplies.
In this connection a 59-year-old male Chinese national was arrested at Hurstville and a 37-year-old male and a 52-year-old female Hong Kong nationals were arrested at Campsie. The arrested three were charged with knowingly taking part in the manufacture of a commercial quantity of a prohibited drug, contrary to section 24 of the Drug Misuse and Trafficking Act 1985 (NSW).
Commander Chris Sheehan, AFP State Manager NSW said that Operation Ovcharka has stopped a billion dollars-worth of ice from reaching Australian streets. The charges leveled against the accused can attract a maximum penalty of life imprisonment.