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Three Malaysians nabbed for smuggling AUD46 million worth of drugs into Australia

KUALA LUMPUR: Three Malaysians were arrested for attempting to smuggle in a total of AUD46 million of drugs carefully packed in tea packaging before being stashed in luggage into Melbourne, Australia.

Australian Federal Police (AFP) in a press statement said the three men who departed from Kuala Lumpur had arrived in Melbourne, Australia on Sunday with their luggage checked in.

Checks on the men’s suitcases by Australian Border Force revealed anomalies and further examination by AFP determined the estimated concealment within the three suitcases at 55kg of methamphetamine and 18kg of heroin.

“The potential street value for this quantity of drugs is AUD36.8 million and AUD10.1 million respectively,” the statement said.

Following the discovery, AFP officers conducted a controlled delivery of the suitcases to a hotel in Melbourne and all three men were arrested.

Two of the men were charged with the importation of a commercial quantity of border controlled drugs, contrary to section 307.1 of the Criminal Code Act 1995 (Cth), attempting to possess a commercial quantity of border controlled drugs, contrary to section 307.5 of the Criminal Code Act 1995 (Cth) on Tuesday.

The third man is expected to be charged at a later date.

AFP Acting National Manager Crime Operations Paul Osborne praised the efforts of the AFP and ABF members for identifying the importation and acting quickly to bring about a resolution.

“This was a brazen attempt to smuggle in a quantity of drugs that could have caused immeasurable harm in the community.

“The AFP will continue its work with partner agencies to cut off the supply of drugs by syndicates that seek to profit from the addiction and misery of others,” he said in the statement.

ABF Acting Commissioner Michael Outram said this detection is due to the commitment and skill of ABF officers, and the targeted approach used at the international airports.

“This seizure represents one of the largest seizures in Australian history through an Australian international airport, which proves law enforcement agencies are working harder than ever to keep drugs out of our community,” he said.-nst

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