A PILOT has been arrested after a light plane was intercepted at a NSW airport with 45kg of cannabis on board.
About 4.30pm yesterday, Gangs Squad detectives intercepted a light plane as it landed at Deniliquin Airport.
The pilot, a 67-year-old man from Queensland, was placed under arrest and police seized 45kg of cannabis and four kilograms of a precursor to the drug ‘ice’ (methylamphetamine) from the aircraft.
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The aircraft was also seized by police and will undergo forensic examinations.
Police will allege that large commercial quantities of drugs and firearms were being supplied from South Australia to NSW by people affiliated with the Descendants and Hells Angels outlaw motorcycle gangs in South Australia.
The arrest followed an eight-month investigation between crime task forces across three states and coincided with further raids in NSW, South Australia and Queensland.
In the past eight months, police have seized 38 firearms, 100 ecstasy pills and small amount of ‘ice’ (methylamphetamine), and uncovered links to outlaw motorcycle gang activity in South Australia.
South Australian Police raided nine properties in Adelaide, arresting six people including a 52-year old man from Salisbury North, a 49-year-old man from Allenby Gardens, a 31-year-old man from Salisbury North, a 28-year-old man from Klemzig, a 31-year-old man from Findon, and a 26-year-old man from Elizabeth for serious drug offences. Investigations are ongoing.
The Queensland Police Service’s Taskforce Maxima executed search warrants upon a number of addresses in Brisbane and the Gold Coast.
The 67-year-old pilot was taken to Deniliquin Police Station and was charged with Large Commercial drug supply (x2). He was refused bail and is due to appear at Deniliquin Local Court today (Thursday 3 September 2015.
During the operation in Hay, four men, aged 38, 29, 43 and 46, were arrested. Each of the four men were charged with ongoing gun supply and were bail refused to appear at Deniliquin Local Court today (Thursday 3 September 2015).
The Gangs Squad’s Detective Inspector Gavin Wood said the operation demonstrated the close co-operation between different policing jurisdictions to tackle organised crime.
“These investigations have been into a suspected major supply chain for illicit commodities across state borders,” Det Insp Wood said.
“It sends a strong message that borders are irrelevant to law enforcement agencies working collaboratively to target the trafficking of firearms and drugs.”