Law enforcements officials have seized 274 kilograms of ephedrine in one of the largest such drug busts in Australian history, according to reports.
The drug is used in small amounts to make cold medicine but is a key ingredient in the making of crystal methamphetamine. It was found hidden in a shipment of rice from India to Melbourne.
Officials say the quantity seized could be used to manufacture up to 200kg of crystal meth, with a street value of up to $200 million.
They said it was the third-largest seizure of the drug in Australian history.
The bust was a joint operation by the Australian Federal Police, the Department of Agriculture and Customs that began in July.
Four people have been arrested in connection with the bust – an Australian, an Indian national, and two Canadians.
Australian Federal Police crime operations national manager Ian McCartney says a multinational syndicate has been dismantled and “significantly stemmed the flow of narcotics on to Australian streets”.
“The syndicate is indicative of the nature of criminal enterprises that exist only to make a profit, regardless of the harmful effect these drugs will have on Australians once they hit our streets,” he said in a statement. Image/ABC/au.news.yahoo.com