Law enforcement agencies have seized $1 billion of ice in the largest drug bust of liquid methamphetamine in Australia’s history, federal Justice Minister Michael Keenan announced on Monday. This is the largest ever seizure of liquid methylamphetamine in Australia.
In a Sky News broadcast, the seize was two months in the making after the Joint Organised Crime Group began Operation OVCHARKA in November to investigate illegal drugs bound for Australia from Asia.
On Boxing Day Border Force officers examined 86 boxes of silicon bra inserts imported from Hong Kong and allegedly discovered about 190 litres of liquid methamphetamine inside.
Three Hong Kong nationals and one Chinese national have been charged over their involvement in the drug syndicate, which is alleged to have imported 720 litres of methylamphetamine into NSW.
The syndicate was uncovered after border force officials at Sydney Airport notified the Australian Federal Police of a 33-year-old Hong Kong man, whom they identified as “high risk”, as he entered Australia on November 9, 2015.
Ice is a purified form of methamphetamine. Much of the ice in the US and Australia come from larger scale methamphetamine labs such as those in Mexico. Most small-scale methamphetamine cooks are currently using the “shake and bake” method of manufacturing powder meth, which is not as pure and is not formed into the crystals that constitute ice.
Many individuals who become addicted to methamphetamine suffer from under-treated or undiagnosed mental illnesses. These mental illnesses may include:
- Depressive disorders
- Anxiety disorders
- Bipolar disorder
- Conduct disorders
- Antisocial personality disorder
Ice addiction will be discussed at the Australian and New Zealand Addiction Conference 2016, themed Alcohol – Other Drugs – Behavioural Addictions, Prevention, Treatment and Recovery. The Conference will be held on the Gold Coast from the 19 – 20 May 2016.
Hosted by the Mental Health Association, the Conference aims to better understand the interrelationship of addictive disorders between each other, as well as with mental health, family, community, and culture. To register for the Conference CLICK HERE.