Police in Australia have busted a Hong Kong based-dug syndicate and seized crystal methamphetamine and heroin having an estimated street value of up to 500 million Australian dollars ($525 million), it was announced Tuesday.
According to officials, the drugs were found hidden in a shipment of terracotta pots from Thailand on July 19. Subsequently, seven people, including four Hong Kong nationals and three Australian residents, were arrested in raids carried out in Sydney on Monday.
The seized drugs shipment consisted of 252 kilograms of heroin and 306 kilograms of crystal methamphetamine, which is also known as "ice." It is believed to be the largest seizure of ''ice'' and the third largest seizure of heroin.
Officials said Australian police had launched an investigation into the Hong Kong-based drug syndicate on August 11, 2011 following a tip-off from the US Drug Enforcement Administration. The detained suspects will be charged at a Sydney court with importing and processing drugs.
"Countless lives would have been affected had this seizure made its way to Australian streets," Deputy Commissioner Andrew Colvin told Australian media on Tuesday, adding that continuing investigations could lead to more arrests.
by RTT Staff Writer
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