Almost half a tonne of MDMA has been seized in Sydney following a joint Australian Federal Police (AFP) and Australian Border Force (ABF) operation.
Three people have been also been arrested in relation to the drug bust.
As many as 248 packages of MDMA were found hidden in four industrial mincing machines in a shipping container that arrived in Port Botany from Turkey last month.
Further forensic testing will be carried out by AFP forensics specialists to determine the exact weight and purity of the substance, although it’s estimated that if the 496kg of MDMA was pressed into pills for sale on the street, it could have yielded 1.7 million pills with a potential street value of more than $57 million.
Three men aged 27, 24 and 29 were arrested following the drug bust and faced Parramatta Bail Court yesterday.
They were charged with importing a commercial quantity of a border controlled drug and/or attempting to possess a commercial quantity of a border controlled drug.
They were all remanded in custody and are due to appear again later in the month.
“Had this drug seizure made its way to Australian streets, countless lives would have been affected,” said AFP Detective Superintendent Kirsty Schofield of Coordinator Organised Crime Sydney.
“Whether it be users, health care workers that deal with drug issues each and every day, or the family that has been torn apart when deaths occur from illicit substance abuse.
“Seizures like this don’t address the issues of demand and why people are willing to risk their lives by taking drugs without accurate knowledge of what they contain, but stopping almost half a tonne goes some way to reducing the harm these drugs can cause our communities.”
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