Hazmat officers prepare to re-enter the scene of the suspected drug lab at Billinudgel.
Hazmat officers prepare to re-enter the scene of the suspected drug lab at Billinudgel. Kate O'Neill

Police raid suspected drug lab

POLICE and chemical experts spent most of yesterday at the scene of a suspected drug lab in Billinudgel after a tip-off from the public.

Police initially descended on the suspected lab at Mogo Pl, in Billinudgel’s Industrial Estate, on Tuesday afternoon.

A crime scene was established and a quantity of drug-making apparatus and substances were seized.

A 21-year-old man from Brisbane and a 46-year-old man from Billinudgel were arrested.

NSW Fire and Rescue HAZMAT crew and police returned to the premises yesterday, wearing protective spill suits and masks, as they entered what appeared to be a garden shed behind the vacant tile shop.

Tweed-Byron local area command crime manager, Detective Inspector Shane Diehm, classified the laboratory as small.

“Police are investigating what may be a clandestine laboratory at Billinudgel,” he said.

“Byron Bay detectives are continuing their investigations, with the assistance of the State Crime Command Drug Unit, HAZMAT and chemical experts.

“It is dangerous and chemical experts are on scene to ensure the area remains safe.”

The suspected drugs seized from the laboratory have yet to be identified and the commercial value is unknown.

Nearby workers said the residence behind the vacant business had been occupied for some time and they had seen cars coming and going.

They had also witnessed children running around outside earlier this week.

No charges have been laid in relation to the suspected lab but the men have been charged with drug-related offences.

They will appear in Mullumbimby Local Court on April 28.

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