Customs seizes 50kg of precursor drugs destined for streets

AUSTRALIAN Customs and Border Protection Service officers seized more than 50kg in precursor drugs in New South Wales last week.

The chemicals - comprising more than 38kg of ephedrine, 10kg of ContacNT and 3kg of pseudoephedrine - were found in 19 consignments came from China, Hong Kong, Vietnam and Ireland and were found concealed inside a pram, clip boards, car seat covers, curry powder, LED lights, cleaning products and paint brushes.

ContacNT is a cold and flu medication, which contains high levels of pseudoephedrine and can be legally purchased in some countries.

Pseudoephedrine and ephedrine are precursor drugs used to manufacture amphetamine-type substances, such as methamphetamine or 'ice'.

Jagtej Singh, Customs' national manager of cargo operations, described the haul as "significant".

"In just one week our officers have stopped over 50kg of dangerous drugs from reaching our streets," Mr Singh said.

It is prohibited to import ephedrine-type substances into Australia without a permit.

Anyone caught importing precursor drugs such as ContacNT, ephedrine or pseudoephedrine, could face a fine of up to $510,000 and/or 15 years in prison.


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