A SYDNEY man has been sentenced for his role in a plot to import 15.3 kilograms of methamphetamine into Australia in air cargo.
The man, 33, became the suspect of a 2021 investigation after US authorities found meth in an air-freight consignment on its way from the US to Australia.
The consignment was described as containing blueprints. US authorities examined the shipment and found drugs worth an estimated $13 million in street value.
US authorities removed the drugs from the shipment, and Australian Federal Police investigators carried out a controlled delivery to its intended address in Jordan Springs, a suburb in Western Sydney.
Investigators found evidence suggesting the recipient was a member of an Australian-based criminal syndicate.
Police believe he was paid to have his personal information recorded on the consignment in an attempt to avoid other “more-senior” syndicate members coming to the attention of police.
The man was arrested at his home after taking delivery of the consignment.
He pleaded guilty on 8 August 2022 to one count of attempting to possess a commercial quantity of a border-controlled drug.
He was sentenced at the Sydney Downing Centre District Court on 31 July 2023 to five years and six months’ imprisonment, with a non-parole period of three years.
AFP Command Kate Ferry said the AFP is working alongside its partners at the border and offshore to share intelligence, track the movement of illicit drugs into Australia and ultimately prosecute those responsible for trafficking the “destructive” substances.
“To people who think methamphetamine may be harmless, the AFP estimates this seizure has saved the community more than $4 million in drug-related harm, including associated crime, healthcare and loss of productivity,” Command Kate Ferry said.