$18.9m of meth hidden in shipping pallets

·1-min read

Two Sydney men are accused of importing 63 kilograms of methamphetamine hidden inside shipping pallets from Malaysia, with an estimated street value of $18.9 million.

The shipment, labelled as "mop buckets", came to the attention of authorities in March when it was examined by Border Force officers in Sydney.

The pair, aged 27 and 36, were arrested on Thursday after Australian Federal Police conducted a controlled delivery of the shipment to an address in Guildford West in Sydney's west.

Forensic examination revealed 18 wooden pallets had methamphetamine concealed inside their slats, totalling 63 kgs.

Police identified the 27-year-old from Merrylands as the recipient and searched the Bexley residence of the older man.

Both were charged with attempting to possess a commercial quantity of unlawfully imported border controlled drugs. The maximum penalty for this offence is life imprisonment.

They faced Sydney's Central Local Court on Friday and were refused bail.

The operation shows that officers must search the actual shipment packaging, not just items stored inside it, ABF Port Operations East Acting Commander Brendan Slape said.

"The ABF knows the methods criminals use to conceal illicit drugs are constantly evolving," he said.