BUSTED: 64 arrested from 'major organised crime syndicate'
SIXTY-FOUR people have been arrested on more than 100 charges following the closure of a drug trafficking investigation targeting criminal groups involved in distributing "ice" through southeast Queensland.
The operation Romeo Amata commenced in November last year and culminated with about 100 local officers executing 34 search warrants at properties situated between Moreton Bay and the Sunshine Coast on October 16 and 17.
The closure resulted in multiple arrests for drug trafficking, dangerous drug and firearm possession and property offences.
It will be alleged that one of the primary offenders, a 34-year-old man from Pelican Waters, established a network for the distribution of methylamphetamine and GHB as well as illegal firearms.
The man allegedly attempted to cover up income derived from the deals though a legitimate concreting business.
He was charged with 13 offences including two counts each of possessing dangerous drugs, producing dangerous drugs, trafficking in dangerous drugs, possess property suspected of having been acquired for the purpose of committing a drug offence and one count each of unlawful possession of weapons, receiving or possessing property obtained from trafficking or supplying, possession of property suspected of being the proceeds of an offence, possessing anything used in the commission of crime, fail to take reasonable care in respect to a syringe and contravene order to access information stored electronically.
He has been remanded in custody to reappear in Maroochydore Magistrates Court in February next year.
An alleged associate of the man, a 30-year-old woman from Baringa, was charged with 15 similar offences after police raided a Baringa home on October 16 and seized dangerous drugs and property.
She has been remanded in custody to reappear in Maroochydore Magistrates Court on October 30.
It is further alleged that during a search at a property in Sippy Downs, police located a loaded MP5 submachine gun inside the boot of a vehicle with ammunition and a quantity of the drug "ice" estimated to be worth $20,000.
Investigations into the matter are continuing and no charges have been laid at this stage.
In total, 64 people were arrested and charged with offences including: 29 of trafficking dangerous drug namely Methylamphetamine, 20 of Trafficking dangerous drugs namely GHB, three of supply dangerous drugs, 51 of possession dangerous drugs, three of produce dangerous drugs namely GHB, and one of produce dangerous drugs namely steroids.
Dangerous drugs seized during the two-day raids include nine litres of GHB, half a kilo of ice, 200ml of steroids, and 850 pharmaceutical tablets.
A number of weapons were located including four hand guns, two long-arm firearms, one sawn-off shot gun, five tasers and one MP5 sub auto firearm.
About $42,0000 in cash and $162,000 of assets including several cars and a Harley Davidson motorcycle were also seized.
Sergeant Craig Mansfield from the Sunshine Coast District Drug and Serious Crime Task Force said the operation has netted some of the state's most prolific offenders.
"We remain committed to targeting organised crime syndicates and their business enterprises on the Coast involved in the supply and trafficking of illicit drugs and weapons," Sgt Mansfield said.
"It is a great result to see this serious threat to the local community removed."