Biosecurity officers from the Department of Agriculture and officers from the Australian Border Force (ABF) demonstrated the importance of teamwork at the border last month by seizing a three-litre package of methamphetamine.
Biosecurity officers first identified and opened the suspicious package, originating from Hong Kong, at Sydney’s Australia Post mail sorting centre last Wednesday.
Inside were six tins of mushrooms within liquid.
One of the offending tins.
The suspicious contents were handed over to ABF officers who tested the liquid and received a positive result for Methamphetamine.
The case was then referred to the Australian Federal Police (AFP) and investigations remain ongoing.
ABF Regional Commander New South Wales, Tim Fitzgerald, said the seizure highlights how government agencies work in tandem to detect illegal behaviour and bring offenders to justice.
“The Australian Border Force works extremely closely with partner agencies including the Department of Agriculture. Through this referral and subsequent examination we identified a significant concealment of narcotics suspended in liquid,” Mr Fitzgerald said.
“This seizure should send a strong message to those importing narcotics that, regardless of the method of concealment, we will identify and intercept these packages.”
Head of the Department of Agriculture’s Targeting and Enforcement Branch, Wayne Terpstra, said that biosecurity officers were always on the lookout for prohibited items.
“Even though the Border Force looks for drugs while Agriculture looks for bugs, our biosecurity officers are always vigilant, looking for prohibited goods in any form,” Mr Terpstra said.
“Australia’s border protection agencies are the first line of defence against illicit goods that have the potential to harm the Australian community—whether this be narcotics, weapons or prohibited plant and animal products — and we take that responsibility very seriously.”