Five people have been charged over their alleged roles in the theft of up to 250 tonnes of salmon – valued at more than $4 million – from a processing plant in Sydney’s south-west.
In December 2020, police were contacted by the executive of a salmon farming and processing company in relation to possible coordinated criminal conduct of employees.
Detectives from Campbelltown City Police Area Command were told the company had conducted an internal audit, which revealed a significant reduction in the output of product through their processing plant at Ingleburn.
It was determined that on average, about 600kg of salmon product was unaccounted for each day.
As part of inquiries, detectives attended the Ingleburn plant just after midday on Sunday 20 December 2020 and spoke with a number of employees at the completion of their shift and located two female employees who had allegedly stolen salmon products from the plant.
The women – aged 30 and 31 – were issued with Future Court Attendance Notices for larceny as clerk/servant.
They are both due to appear at Campbelltown Local Court on Monday 22 February 2021.
Following further investigation, detectives attended the plant about 10am on Wednesday 23 December 2020, and arrested two men – aged 32 and 49 – who were taken to Campbelltown Police Station.
The 32-year-old Minto man was charged with steal property as clerk/servant ($5000-$15,000).
The 49-year-old Cabramatta man was charged with steal property as clerk/servant (more than $15,000).
Both men were granted strict conditional bail and are due to appear at Campbelltown Local Court today (Monday 18 January 2021).
Detectives arrested a third man following his arrival into Sydney Airport from Perth, about 7.15pm the same day.
The 30-year-old Belmore man was taken to Mascot Police Station, where he was charged with steal property as clerk/servant (more than $15,000).
He was granted strict conditional bail and is due to appear at Campbelltown Local Court on Monday 1 February 2021.
Police will allege in court that the syndicate used their roles within the company to falsely grade premium salmon products as waste, which was then removed from the plant and transported for on-sale or traded for other product.
In total, more than 250 tonnes of salmon were allegedly stolen between June and December 2020, which would have an estimated retail value of more than $4 million.
The company has terminated the employment of all five people.
Inquiries are continuing.