Following operations spanning two states, Tasmania Police confiscated more than $5.5 million in illicit narcotics and cash.
A narcotics importation and trafficking investigation that began in March this year resulted in the seizure of 3.86 kilos of methylamphetamine and 700 grams of cocaine, valued at more than $4 million.
Police in Tasmania and Queensland seized an additional $1.57 million in cash after conducting a series of car and premises searches.
It’s not the same as the collaboration between the Australian Federal Police and the Federal Bureau of Investigation, which was also revealed today and is aimed at Australia’s mafia and illegal motorcycle gangs.
Six people were detained and charged with dealing with the proceeds of crime and trafficking a controlled narcotic.
They’ll appear in Tasmanian court at a later date.
Operation Carnegie was initiated by Tasmania Police’s Crime and Intelligence Command in 2020 with the goal of “further enhancing the coordination of expert resources to investigate crime at all levels in Tasmania,” according to police.
The Australian Federal Police, Australian Criminal Intelligence Commission, and Queensland Police all assisted with the operation.
The drug investigation was “extremely sophisticated,” according to Assistant Commissioner of Tasmania Police Jonathan Higgins, and it was considered to be the largest illicit drug investigation Tasmanian police had ever performed.
“The results of this investigation show how jurisdictions and partner agencies can work together to combat the menace of organized crime syndicates and the effects of illicit substances in our communities,” Assistant Commissioner Higgins stated.
“Illicit substances have a wide-ranging negative influence on our community, especially in terms of health, law, and order.”
This current operation is an example of a concerted effort by police and other law enforcement agencies to target the supply of illicit substances into our community.
“In Tasmania, criminals involved in the manufacture and distribution of drugs should take note. We’ll find you, examine you, and prosecute you for bringing illegal substances into Tasmania and distributing them.”
Assistant Commissioner Bruce Giles of the Australian Federal Police said the collaboration between federal and state and territory police was a “historic moment” for law enforcement cooperation and would protect the Tasmanian people from further damage.
“The message is clear: If you are trafficking and distributing illicit narcotics in Tasmania or elsewhere in Australia, we will use our law enforcement alliances across Australia to pursue you,” he said.
“We will continue to pursue individuals who exploit cross-border transportation, whether by air or sea, to protect all Australians from those who seek to profit from the agony they inflict on the most vulnerable.”
In the aftermath of the operation, Queensland Police Crime and Intelligence Command Assistant Commissioner Katherine Innes said law enforcement agencies across the country would continue to collaborate.
“To ensure the successful collapse of these criminal networks, we will continue to share our experience and collaborate with our national and interstate counterparts,” she said.