Illawarra Newsroom

$1 million worth of drugs seized following raids across the Illawarra and Sydney

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Five people including a man from Coniston and a man and woman from Berkeley have been charged following an ongoing investigation into an alleged large-scale drug syndicate operating between the Illawarra and Sydney.

In May 2020, officers attached to Lake Illawarra Police District established Strike Force Mote to investigate organised crime in the Illawarra region, with the assistance of the State Crime Command and the NSW Crime Commission.

Eight people have been arrested and charged in relation to the investigation and they remain before the courts.

It will be alleged $60,000 in cash was seized following a vehicle stop on Heathcote Road at Heathcote two months ago while almost half a kilogram of methamphetamine and more than 40g of heroin was seized from a Toyota Hilux following a vehicle stop on Saturday July 17 on Glastonbury Avenue in Unanderra.

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Following extensive investigations, Police executed ten search warrants at Brighton Le Sands, Arncliffe, Banksia, Rockdale, Condell Park, Greenacre, Potts Hill, Chipping Norton and Coniston between Monday and yesterday.

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During the warrants, five people were arrested and approximately 1.5kg of methamphetamine, 340g of cocaine, heroin, two unauthorised prohibited pistols and approximately $100,000 in cash was seized.

In addition, police seized a Toyota Aurion and Mitsubishi Lancer from a premises on the Princes Highway at Arncliffe.

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It will be alleged police located the methylamphetamine and a revolver pistol with ammunition in the Toyota while a money counter was seized from the Mitsubishi.

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Police said the estimated potential street value of the drugs seized this week is $1 million and all items seized will undergo forensic examination.

Five people were arrested during this week's operation and all have been charged including three from the Illawarra.

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A 40-year-old man was arrested at a home at Jutland Avenue in Coniston about 7.30am yesterday.

He was taken to Wollongong Police Station and charged with seven offences including supply prohibited drug commercial quantity, take part supply prohibited drug large commercial quantity and tamper with evidence with intent to mislead judicial tribunal.

Police will allege he was involved in the movement of methamphetamine and heroin between Sydney and the Illawarra and that he also attempted to dispose of illicit drugs down the toilet. 

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He was refused bail to appear in Wollongong Local Court tomorrow.

A 53-year-old man was arrested at a home at Carringle Street in Berkeley at 7am yesterday.

He was taken to Lake Illawarra Police Station where he was charged with five offences: two counts of take part supply prohibited drug – commercial quantity, two counts of participate criminal group contribute criminal activity, and deal with property proceeds of crime.

Police will also allege he was involved in the movement of methamphetamine and heroin between Sydney and the Illawarra.

He was refused bail to appear in Wollongong Local Court today.

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A 41-year-old woman was also arrested at an address in Shearwater Drive in Berkeley.

She was charged with six offences: three counts of supply prohibited drug commercial quantity, participate criminal group contribute criminal activity and tamper with evidence with intent to mislead judicial tribunal.

Police will allege in court she took part in the large commercial supply of methamphetamine.

The woman was refused bail to appear in Wollongong Local Court today.

Police said investigations under Strike Force Mote continue and further charges are expected to be laid.

Images: Supplied and Google Maps