NT Police have once again disrupted a major interstate Kava smuggling ring supplying the drug to communities in Arnhem Land.
Investigations in Katherine and Darwin have resulted yesterday in the seizure of almost 200 kg of Kava and the arrests so far of three men with a fourth being sought by police.
Katherine Superintendent Colin Smith said police had stopped a blue Toyota Land Cruiser in Darwin at about 1 pm yesterday and a search had yielded 24 kg of Kava hidden inside a blue and white striped bag.
Two men, aged 48 and 38 from New South Wales, were arrested and the Kava and vehicle were seized.
Information given to police then led to the search of two self storage sheds in Yarrawonga where approximately 160 kg of Kava was seized with another small quantity being found at a house in Berrimah.
A simultaneous search of a unit in Cornwallis Circuit, Gray, by Palmerston police yielded a further 13.6 kg of Kava and the arrest of a 39 year old Maningrida man.
Three men have now been charged with a range of offences relating to the possession and supply of Trafficable and Commercial quantities of Kava.
Superintendent Smith said the arrests and Kava seizures send a strong message that police are determined to stop the illegal trade of Kava throughout the Territory.
‘This criminal network has been operating in the NT for some time and many of the persons involved have come to the notice of police on previous occasions. NT Police continue to liaise closely with Customs in an effort to stem the flow of Kava into Australia, most of which is being trafficked throughout Arnhem Land’.
Street value of the Kava seized is estimated at $290,000.
FRIDAY, 14 MAY 2010 14:18
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