Two Guatemalan Nationals charged after more than $1.3 million cash seized

Two Guatemalan Nationals have been charged as part of ongoing investigations into an international money laundering syndicate.

The State Crime Command’s Organised Crime Squad, the NSW Crime Commission and the Australian Criminal Intelligence Commission established Strike Force Muirhead to investigate an international criminal group involved in coordinated money laundering.

As part of ongoing inquiries, strike force detectives executed a search warrant at a storage unit at Annandale about 4.15pm on Saturday (21 December 2019), where they found $1.25 million cash in two bags.

About 10am on Sunday (22 December 2019), strike force detectives, with assistance from Australian Border Force and the Australian Federal Police, attended Sydney International Airport, where they arrested a 51-year-old man, who was preparing to board a flight to Chile.

He was taken to Mascot Police Station and charged with deal with property proceeds of crime (greater than $100,000) and participate criminal group contribute criminal activity.

The man, who is a Guatemalan National, was refused bail and appeared at Parramatta Bail Court yesterday (Monday 23 December 2019), where he was formally refused bail to re-appear at Newtown Local Court on Thursday 23 January 2020.

Following further inquiries, strike force detectives arrested a 28-year-old man inside a hotel at Bondi Beach about 1.30pm yesterday.

Shortly after, a search warrant was executed inside one of the hotel apartments, where detectives seized $80,000 cash, an encrypted communications device, documents, bags and clothing.

The man, who is also a Guatemalan National, was taken to Waverley Police Station and charged with two counts of deal with property proceeds of crime (greater than $100,000) and participate criminal group contribute criminal activity.

He was refused bail to appear at Parramatta Bail Court today (Tuesday 24 December 2019).

Investigations under Strike Force Muirhead are ongoing.

Anyone with information that may assist Strike Force Muirhead investigators is urged to contact Crime Stoppers: 1800 333 000 or https://nsw.crimestoppers.com.au. Information is treated in strict confidence.

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