Police charge man for importing drugs on overseas flight

This is a joint release with the Australian Federal Police and Australian Border Force.

A United Kingdom national has been remanded in custody after appearing before Downing Centre Local Court today (26 September, 2022), charged by the AFP with importing methamphetamine.

The man, 19, arrived at Sydney Airport yesterday (25 September, 2022) on a flight transiting through Vietnam, where he was selected by Australian Border Force (ABF) officers for a baggage examination.

An initial search of his suitcase revealed inconsistencies within the lining of the bag, prompting ABF officers to undertake a closer examination, including an x-ray scan.

A white crystalline substance was found concealed within the lining of his suitcase. Preliminary testing returned a positive result for methamphetamine with an estimated gross weight of two kilograms.

Further forensic testing will be undertaken by the AFP to determine the exact weight and purity of the substance.

AFP officers arrested the man and transported him to Mascot Police Station where he was charged with importing a commercial quantity of border controlled drugs, contrary to section 307.1 of the Criminal Code 1995 (Cth).

The maximum penalty for this offence is life imprisonment.

Detective Inspector Scott Sykes said the AFP continued to work closely with the ABF at airports across the country to identify criminals attempting to smuggle illicit drugs into Australia.

“Our top priority is always community safety and the public should rest assured that our officers are working tirelessly with partners to stop the importation of drugs and will ensure offenders face the full force of the law,” D/Insp Sykes said.

ABF Superintendent Phillip Anderson said ABF officers are highly skilled and are always on alert to detect and stop the importation of illicit substances coming into Australia.

“Criminals will try to hide illicit drugs in a variety of ways, however no matter the amount of drugs that are hidden, big or small, our officers have the technology and expertise to find them,” Supt Anderson said.

“Ice destroys communities and tears families apart. We are here to protect the community by ensuring that it doesn’t breach our borders.”

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