A WALLAN man is among three people arrested in Melbourne yesterday, charged with importing methamphetamine and pseudoephedrine into Australia.

The Victorian Joint Organised Crime Taskforce, JOCTF, arrested the three men following an investigation into an international organised crime syndicate allegedly attempting to smuggle commercial quantities of controlled drugs and precursors into Victoria.

Precursors, such as pseudoephedrine, are substances known to be used in the illegal manufacture of illicit drugs.

The JOCTF consists of members of the Australian Federal Police, Victoria Police, Australian Border Force, Australian Criminal Intelligence Commission and the Department of Home Affairs.

JOCTF officers arrested the 27-year-old Wallan man along with a Strathtulloh man, 41, and a Truganina man, 23, in Melbourne, seizing several electronic devices and a large quantity of what investigators believe is 1,4-butanediol, a controlled substance in Victoria.

The men faced Melbourne Magistrates’ Court yesterday charged with several offences including importing a commercial quantity of border controlled pre-cursor chemicals, importing a marketable quantity of border controlled drugs, and dealing with money that would become an instrument of crime.

The maximum penalty for the importation offences is 25 years’ imprisonment while the maximum penalty for the proceeds of crime offence is 10 years’ imprisonment.

Investigators said the expected to lay further charges.

Victoria Police Detective Superintendent Jacqueline Curran said the arrests highlighted cooperation between law enforcement agencies to limit the harm caused by drug trafficking.

“We’ve made no secret of the fact that Victoria Police is determined to make Victoria a hostile place for organised crime and in particular, those who are engaged in the importation and trafficking of drugs,” she said.

“Alongside our partner agencies, we will continue to target criminal syndicates and hold them to account. If you commit an offence, there is nowhere to hide, we will track you down.”

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