New South Wales police have seized thousands of cannabis plants worth over $7 million after carrying out a major raid on a property in Sydney’s southwest.
At 8 am Wednesday morning, officers from Strike Force Hyperion carried out a crime scene warrant at a semi-rural property on Eagleview Road, Minto, located near Campbelltown.
The scene was attended by detectives from the State Crime Command’s Drug and Firearm Squad, and officers from the Bass Hill Region Enforcement Squad (RES), Campbelltown City Police Area Command and the Dog Unit.
Together, these officers located 2,379 cannabis plants – many of which were growing in a sophisticated greenhouse setup. In total, police estimate that these plants are worth $7.1 million on Sydney’s streets.
Police also seized cash and electronic devices from a home and a granny flat located at the residence. The raid was the result of a six-month police investigation.
NSW Police Drug Squad Commander Detective Superintendent John Watson spoke to 7News about Wednesday’s bust, stating that many of the cannabis plants police seized were close to fully grown.
There are literally thousands of plants – various maturity – ready to go for harvest. They look like any other commercial vegetable, or any marketplace flower operations.
The cannabis was destroyed in a large bonfire. It’s uncertain whether the police were down or upwind when the bonfire was lit.
The raid resulted in the arrests of five men, aged 29, 29, 33, 25 and 49 years old. They were taken to Campbelltown Police Station, where they have been charged with the following offences:
- Cultivating a prohibited plant in a large commercial quantity
- Supplying a prohibited plant in an indictable quantity
- Recklessly dealing with the proceeds of crime
- Participating in a criminal group
The men appeared before Campbelltown Local Court on Thursday, where they were denied bail. The Department of Home Affairs is currently investigating the visa status of the group.