Police arrest seven with guns and drugs seized in Melbourne’s south east

Last night, detectives from a Southern Metro Divisional Response Unit arrested seven people as part of a significant investigation into the trafficking of methylamphetamines and firearms in Melbourne’s south east.

Operation Diligent commenced in February this year and is a major drug investigation focused on detecting and disrupting serious offending in the south eastern suburbs.

Last night police executed seven warrants at residential addresses in Brighton, Oakleigh South, Bentleigh, Bentleigh East, Cheltenham and Clayton.

Police seized a number of items including a 22 calibre handgun, a shortened double barrel shotgun, pen pistol, ammunition, firearm components, a commercial quantity of methylamphetamine, traffickable quantities of cocaine cannabis, GHB, steroids, 1.4 butanediol, various prescription medications, documents and equipment for the manufacturing of drugs, stolen property, identification documents, two tasers, other prohibited weapons, a stolen BMW and a large amount of property believed to be the proceeds of crime.

Investigators have charged seven people with offences including:

• A 29-year-old man from Oakleigh South who has been charged with possess an unregistered handgun, dispose of a handgun except to a licensed dealer, traffick methylamphetamine and possess methylamphetamine. He has been remanded to appear at Melbourne Magistrates’ Court today.

• A 29-year-old man from Brighton who has been charged with possess an unregistered handgun, dispose of a handgun except to a licensed dealer, traffick methylamphetamine, possess methylamphetamine, handle stolen goods and proceeds of crime. He has been remanded to appear at Melbourne Magistrates’ Court today.

• A 32-year-old woman from Bentleigh East who has been charged with traffick methylamphetamine, possess methylamphetamine, handle stolen goods and proceeds of crime. She has been remanded to appear at Moorabbin Magistrates’ Court today.

• A 24-year-old man from Oakleigh South who has been charged with possess an unregistered handgun, possess general firearm, possess document or equipment used for the manufacture of a drug of dependence, two counts of possess a prohibited weapons, traffick and possess 1.4 Butanediol, cannabis, GHB, methylamphetamine, steroids, prescription medication and possess proceeds of crime. He has been remanded to appear at Moorabbin Magistrates’ Court.

• A 56-year-old woman from Oakleigh South who has been charged with possess methylamphetamine and cocaine, two counts of possess a prohibited weapon and possess proceeds of crime. She has been bailed to appear at Moorabbin Magistrates’ Court at a later date.

• A 24-year-old man from Cheltenham who has been charged with possess methylamphetamine, handle stolen goods and possess prohibited weapon. He has been bailed to appear at Moorabbin Magistrates’ Court on 2 October.

• A 26-year-old man from Clayton South was interviewed regarding drug and firearms offences and has been released pending summons.

Superintendent Sharon McKinnon said last night’s arrests are the result of hard work and dedication by officers from the Southern Metro Divisional Response Unit.

“A significant amount of time and resources have been invested into Operation Diligent, which has today resulted in the dismantling and demise of significant criminal syndicate peddling firearms and drugs in our community.

“This type of offending continues to be a key focus for police in the south east and we have zero tolerance for those bringing harm to the community.

“We know that drugs continue to be a key driver for further crimes such as thefts, burglaries and robberies – crimes that are often committed to fuel a growing drug dependence.

“Through the execution of warrants and arrests like we saw today, we know we will see a flow on effect with a reduction in street crime in the surrounding suburbs.

“We want to reassure the community that Victoria Police will continue to work tirelessly to detect and disrupt this kind of serious offending in our community.”

The Southern Metro Divisional Response Unit were supported by a number of other units in the execution of these arrests, including the Special Operations Group, Critical Incident Response Team, general duties police, detectives from a number of crime investigation units, Dog Squad and Clan Labs.

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