Police uncover major drugs lab

Published 4:15pm 1 August 2023

Police uncover major drugs lab
Words by Nick Crockford

Two men have been charged with drug offences after police searched a Rothwell property today and allegedly uncovered “super lab” equipment.

Detectives will allege they found ‘super lab’ equipment including 900 kilograms of Benzylmethylketone (BMK), the main precursor to producing methylamphetamine.

The equipment and chemicals indicate commercial drug production and it is estimated the ‘super lab’ would have produced approximately half a billion dollars’ worth of methylamphetamine from the 900kg of BMK seized.

It will be further alleged a handgun was located inside the storage facilities.

‘Operation Victor Carpenter’ lead by Carseldine Criminal Investigation Branch detectives with the Australian Federal Police (AFP) and Queensland Joint Organised Crime Task Force (QJOCTF) began a joint agency operation in April targeting the commercial, international importation of illicit drugs into Australia.

Investigators attached to the joint agency operation carried out search warrants at a storage facility in Morris Rd, Rothwell.

A 38-year-old Albion man and a 44-year-old Bracken Ridge man are expected to be charged at a later date.

“The sheer scale of this operation shows that the AFP and our partners have uncovered a highly sophisticated and well-funded organised crime operation,” AFP Detective Superintendent Adrian Telfer said.

“The AFP is working with the QPS and other law enforcement partners to identify the criminals linked to this operation to prevent them profiting at the expense of our communities.

“Stopping this lab from ever being operational in Australia is a significant victory for law enforcement and a credit to the hard work of the Queensland Joint Organised Task Force (QJOCTF).”

The QJOCTF is a multi-agency taskforce comprised of members of the Australian Federal Police (AFP), Queensland Police Service (QPS), Australian Border Force (ABF), Australian Criminal Intelligence Commission (ACIC), Australian Taxation Office (ATO), and Australian Transaction Reporting and Analysis Centre (AUSTRAC).

The role of the QJOCTF is to investigate transnational serious and organised crime threats impacting Australia.

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