A 25-year-old man accused of his suspected involvement in importing from the United States 276 grams of methamphetamine, worth around $276,000 in WA, is scheduled to face Perth Magistrate’s Court today (Friday, 12 February 2021).
On 12 January 2021, Australian Federal Police officers arrested the Dianella man after he reportedly ripped open a plush toy llama to access the illegal drugs he expected to find hidden inside.
The toy was among the items in a package sent by mail from the United States, wrapped in Christmas paper and identified in Western Australia as gifts for a family.
Police would claim that the man set fire to some of the contents after going through the box.
A search warrant was executed by AFP officers at the house, where burned remains of the mailed objects were reportedly found in an outdoor fireplace.
After Australian Border Force (ABF) officers at the New South Wales mail facility allegedly discovered a white crystalline powder concealed in the flame when they inspected the package on 3 January, a drug import investigation was initiated.
A positive presumptive methamphetamine test was confirmed for the drug.
The matter was referred to the AFP and the officers substituted an inert material for the illegal drugs before sending the package on 12 January to the destination address in Leeming.
Police would say that the package was received by a man at the residence before bringing it to his home in Dianella, where it was opened.
The 25-year-old was accused of attempting to obtain a marketable amount of methamphetamine, a border-controlled substance, according to section 307.6 of the Criminal Code Act 1995. (Cth).
The crime carries a possible maximum sentence of imprisonment of 25 years.
Detective Sergeant Gabrielle Adam of the AFP said there is no appropriate quantity of illegal substances in our neighbourhoods, and the AFP works closely with our partners to address all levels of drug trafficking.
“The potential penalty shows how seriously this offence is taken by the Government and authorities,” Detective Sergeant Adam said.
The use of methamphetamine is associated with other crimes, including assaults and thefts, and any driver affected by this drug is a threat to anyone else on the roads.
“We will do what we can to prevent these drugs from causing harm in our communities and prosecute those involved in the illicit trade.”
John Fleming, ABF Superintendent of Foreign Mail NSW, said that ABF officers are still on high alert when it comes to detecting border threats.
“ABF officers are highly trained and equipped with state of the art technology to protect the Australian community from threats like illegal drugs,” Superintendent Fleming said.
“Our officers are stationed at every international port across Australia, they are experts at intercepting illicit drugs no matter the size of the concealment or where criminals attempt to hide them, this detection is yet another example of their great work.”