A MAJOR crime syndicate has been smashed with raids on eight properties at Casino and Lismore, police say.
The raids, which followed months of investigations by strike force Mitla, netted about $40,000 worth of hash and ice, according to police estimates, along with handguns, rifles, and drug parts.
Police are alleging the three men arrested before and during yesterday's raids are the ringleaders of a local crime syndicate selling drugs and guns and directing the activities of a group of criminals.
Richmond Local Area Command Crime Manager Detective Inspector Cameron Lindsay said the raids began about 1.50am yesterday withthree men were arrested when police pulled over an orange Holden Commodore on the Pacific Motorway at Tugun.
He said during a search of the car, police allegedly found an amount of drugs believed to be ice.
"The three men have been charged with offences relating to the commercial supply of ice," he said.
The 25-year-old male driver and his passengers, two men, aged 25 and 26 were arrested and taken to Tweed police station.
Det Insp Lindsay said police did not currently believe the men were members of bikie gangs.
"We are investigating a number of lines of enquiry regarding the source of these drugs, however at this stage we will not allege these three men are members of OMCG groups," Det Insp Lindsay said.
Yesterday morning police raided eight homes including properties at Pine St, North Lismore, two residences on Hare St, Casino, and a home on Richmond St, Casino.
ICE users experience a very intense rush, a feeling of exhilaration, increased arousal and activity levels.
Ice makes users feel more awake and it suppresses their appetite.
Short term problems:
- Increased heart rate
- Hypertension (high blood pressure)
- Irregular body temperature
- Increased breathing rate
- Constricted blood vessels
- Heart problems
- Long term problems:
- Aged appearance
- Damaged teeth
- Lesions on skin
- Risk of stroke
- Decreased lung function
- Poor cognitive function - memory and decision making issues
- Exposure to blood-borne viruses
Det Insp Lindsay said officers seized handguns, rifles, gun parts and drugs alleged to be ice and hashish from the Pine St residence.
"A 38-year-old man was arrested and is assisting police with their enquiries."
"We will allege that some of the firearms that were seized today are part of the illegal use of fire arms in the region."
One 25-year-old man was charged with 16 counts of supplying an indictable quantity of drugs, supplying a prohibited drug, supplying a commercial quantity of drugs, conspiracy to supply an indictable quantity of drugs, seven counts of the illegal sale of firearms and directing activities of a criminal group.
Another 25-year-old man was charged with 16 counts of supplying an indictable quantity of drugs, supplying a prohibited drug, supplying a commercial quantity of drugs, and participating in a criminal group.
The 26-year-old man was charged with five counts of supplying an indictable quantity of drugs, conspiracy to supply indictable quantity of drugs, and participating in a criminal group.
Det Insp Lindsay said police believe the arrests will have a significant impact on ice supply on the Northern Rivers.
"It is such a destructive drug, it destroys families and it destroys young people's lives.
"It is extremely concerning to police."
Jeremy Dennis, Simon Tulk and Blake Davidson appeared at Tweed Heads local court yesterday where they were refused bail to appear at Lismore Local court today.
Det Insp Lindsay urged anyone with any information about the manufacture and supply of ice or illegal guns to call Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.
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