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Police make wild discovery under backyard spa after suspect's Uber Eats order

The suspect was arrested more than six weeks after being found floating on an esky off the Australian coast.

A wanted man has been found and dramatically arrested by police after authorities were reportedly notified of an Uber Eats order purchased under the suspect's name.

The 49-year-old man is the third person arrested in connection to an alleged attempted drug importation of over 300 kilograms of cocaine into Western Australia. After their boat capsized last month, the trio were left clinging to an esky, piquing the attention of police.

The men told police they were fishing when their boat capsized, however when a vessel was found partially submerged a week later with authorities alleging cocaine was found inside, investigators began what would become a six week manhunt.

Two heavily armed police officers standing over the suspect who sits on a black couch, with his hands tied behind his back.
Police received a tip off after the suspect ordered an Uber Eats delivery using his own name to his secret location. Source: AFP

The suspect was found in a "secret compartment" hidden under a spa in the backyard of a Byford property, with the man accompanied by a "loaded gun", federal police said in a statement. According to 9News, an Uber Eats order in his own name led authorities to his location.

Local residents were reportedly told to remain inside while heavily armed specialist operations Tactical Response Team completed the three-hour operation.

"We just heard a voice over from police saying stay inside your house," one witness told 9News.

"We weren't sure what was going on and we checked the cameras and there was three guys in our backyard."

A female police officer crouched in front of the home spa with pieces of wood and tiles strewn over the floor beside her.
The operation took three hours for the police to safely arrest the man, authorities said. Source: AFP

Men charged with importing border controlled drug

Police confirmed all three men have been charged in relation to their alleged attempt to import a "commercial quantity" of cocaine over the border, with the maximum penalty for the offence being life imprisonment.

It is still unknown how and where the men got possession of the illegal drugs in the ocean, however police are continuing to investigate with Australian Federal Police Sergeant Kristen Swan saying authorities would continue to search for answers.

“Our investigation has not ended with the charging of these three men, we continue to work with our partners to track down anyone involved in this importation,” she said.

“The seizure of more than 300kg of cocaine prevented millions of dollars of drug profit from flowing back into a transnational criminal syndicate to fund another illegal venture or lavish lifestyles."

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