Police have seized thee cryptocurrency teller machines, five kilograms of illicit drugs and millions of dollars of cash in Sydney’s south-east as part of a multi-agency operation involving the US Department of Homeland Security.
Officers arrested two men, aged 34 and 39, on Friday afternoon as part of an ongoing investigation into drug importation and alleged money laundering in NSW with the Australian Criminal Intelligence Commission and assistance of the American agency.
Police allege they searched the younger man and found him carrying $120,000 in cash, and the older man carrying $51,500 in cash, as well as 13 envelopes containing illicit drugs. The envelopes, which allegedly contained cocaine, heroin and methylamphetamine, have been seized for forensic investigation.
Video footage of the younger man’s arrest, supplied by NSW Police, shows unmarked police vehicles pulling over a black car on a traffic-jammed Canal Road near the Princes Highway in St Peters on Friday and guiding him towards the car park of a cleaning supplies shop.
The plain-clothes officers are then shown retrieving an Australia Post package out of the car, which contained 10 bundles of $50 notes, as well as bundles of $100 notes from the glove box.
Footage of the older man’s arrest in Redfern shows bundles of $50 notes in a backpack in the car, while the drugs were allegedly contained in several Australia Post envelopes.
A NSW Police statement said officers then executed a search warrant at three related properties on Friday night – two units in an apartment block on Gardeners Road, Mascot, as well as a storage unit in Kingsgrove – where they arrested a third man, 45, and seized a range of items linked to the investigation.
Among them were money counters, mobile phones, laptops, USB devices and three cryptocurrency automatic teller machines, which allow users to purchase Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies with cash or a debit card. Police say they also seized $4.7 million in cash and about 5 kilograms of drugs including heroin, methylamphetamine and cocaine believed to have been illegally imported into the country.