TWO Sydney men have faced court for allegedly importing 63 kilograms of methamphetamine hidden inside shipping pallets from Malaysia, with an estimated street value of $18.9m.

A 36-year-old Bexley man and a 27-year-old Merrylands man were arrested on 8 April after Australian Federal Police officers conducted a controlled delivery of the consignment to an address in Guildford West.

The investigation began in March 2021 when a consignment labelled as mop buckets was examined by Australian Border Force (ABF) officers in Sydney.

Further forensic examination revealed 18 wooden pallets had methamphetamine concealed within the wooden slats, with approximately 63 kilograms uncovered.

Police enquiries identified the 27-year-old Merrylands man as the alleged recipient of the shipment. Police executed a search warrant at a Bexley residence linked to the 36-year-old man.

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The two men were charged with attempting to possess a commercial quantity of unlawfully imported border controlled drugs, contrary to section 307.5 of the Criminal Code Act 1995 (Cth). The maximum penalty for this offence is life imprisonment.

The two men faced Central Local Court and were refused bail.

Australian Border Force Operations East Acting Commander Brendan Slape said, “This operation shows it’s not just imported items that ABF officers are examining for hidden drug concealments, the packaging around those items are heavily scrutinised too.

“The ABF knows the methods criminals use to conceal illicit drugs are constantly evolving. That’s why ABF officers use technological advancements, intelligence analysis and their unique skills to keep on top of the latest trends and concealment methods.”

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