11 charged after more than 40 warrants and FPO searches conducted – Raptor Squad

NSW Police have charged 11 people and executed 42 Firearms Prohibition Orders (FPO) searches and search warrants as part of a week-long operation targeting organised criminal networks across Sydney.

The State Crime Command’s Raptor Squad, with assistance from local police across the Sydney Metropolitan Region, conducted a ‘Week of Action’ between Wednesday 7 and Tuesday 13 April 2021.

During the operation, officers seized more than $400,000 cash, vehicles, weapons, jewellery, and electronic devices.

Officers also seized prohibited drugs with a combined estimated potential street value of more than $200,000.

All items will undergo further forensic examination.

Raptor Squad Commander, Detective Superintendent Jason Weinstein, said the operation is a multi-prong attack utilising partner agencies and police resources across Sydney.

“This operation is part of the our high-visibility policing strategy, aimed at suppressing criminal behaviour and utilising resources from across the region, as well as specialist resources,” Det Supt Weinstein said.

“Over the past week, police spoke with a number of individuals allegedly linked to criminal groups involved in ongoing conflicts, while also executing FPO searches and search warrants, as well as high-visibility and road policing operations.

“The Week of Action has been an outstanding success, with police seizing more than $400,000 cash, weapons, cars and drugs. While no firearms were seized, that is a good indication that these targets don’t readily have access to such weapons.

“Raptor Squad will continue to use its full arsenal of capabilities and take every opportunity to bring criminal gangs to justice to ensure the safety of the community,” Det Supt Weinstein said.

In total, 11 people were charged during the operation.

Significant events include;

  • Just after 6am today (Tuesday 13 April 2021), police executed a search warrant at a home at Penrith and seized more than $120,000 cash, a black BMW sedan, a money counter, prohibited drugs, ammunition, and mobile phones. A 26-year old man was arrested and taken to Penrith Police Station, where he was charged with cause grievous bodily harm to person with intent, affray, supply prohibited drug (commercial quantity), owner/occupier knowingly expose child to drugs, and knowingly deal with proceeds of crime. The man appeared at Penrith Local Court today (Tuesday 13 April 2021), where he was refused bail to reappear at the same court on Friday 16 April 2021.
  • About 1am on Monday (12 April 2021), officers attached to Raptor Highway Patrol were carrying out operations in Punchbowl, when they detected an Audi RS3 allegedly travelling at 110km/h in a 70km/h zone. Police stopped the vehicle at Greenacre and spoke to driver – a 36-year-old man – before seizing the vehicle for forensic examination. The man was arrested and taken to Bankstown Police Station, where he was issued two penalty infringement notices for driving offences and charged with three counts of assault occasioning actual bodily harm, two counts of common assault, intentionally choke person without consent, stalk/intimidate intend fear physical harm. He appeared at Bankstown Local Court on Monday 12 April 2021, where he remains refused bail to reappear at the same court on Wednesday 26 May 2021.
  • Just after 6.30am last Thursday (8 April 2021), Raptor Squad attended a home at Brighton Le Sands to conduct a search warrant. During the search, police seized prohibited drugs, watches, mobile phones and cash. A 39-year-old man was arrested and taken to Kogarah Police Station, where he was charged with supply prohibited drug (indictable quantity), possess/attempt to prescribed restricted substance, deal with property proceeds of crime and possess prohibited drug. The man appeared at Sutherland Local Court the same day, where he was formally refused bail to appear at the same court on Monday 26 April 2021.
  • About 6.30am last Thursday (8 April 2021), officers attached to Raptor Squad executed a search warrant at a property at Greenacre, where they located prescription medication, cocaine, cannabis, mobile phones and nearly $130,000 cash. A 29-year-old man was arrested and taken to Bankstown Police Station, where he was charge with supply prohibited drug (indictable quantity). He was appeared at Bankstown Local Court the same day, where he was granted strict conditional bail to reappear at Burwood Local Court on Thursday 20 May 2021.
  • On Sunday (11 April 2021), police executed an FPO search at a property at Cabramatta, where they located cannabis plants and knuckle dusters. Two men – aged 55 and 44 – were arrested and taken to Fairfield Police Station. The older man was charged with obstruct or hinder execution of search warrant, cultivate prohibited plant, possess prohibited drug, larceny and enhanced indoor cultivate cannabis for commercial purpose. He was granted conditional bail to appear at Liverpool Local Court on Tuesday 25 May 2021.The younger man was released pending further inquiries.

Inquiries by Raptor Squad are continuing, and more arrests are expected.

Strike Force Raptor was established in 2009, before becoming a standalone squad in 2021. Raptor Squad conducts proactive investigations and intelligence-based, high-impact policing operations to prevent and disrupt conflicts, and dismantle any network engaged in serious organised criminal activity.

Anyone with information, including relevant photos and videos, that may assist the Raptor Squad can report it directly to investigators via their online reporting page: https://www1.police.nsw.gov.au/Default.aspx?id=49 or call Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.

Information provided to investigators will be treated in the strictest of confidence.

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