hosted by tracy grimshaw
7:00PM (AEST) weeknights on
Stories
Videos

Massive drug bust baffles Vic police

AAP

Police are baffled over how a man allegedly acquired $3 million worth of pseudoephedrine tablets seized from a Melbourne home early Tuesday.

Drug taskforce detectives found more than five million pharmaceutical-grade tablets in a raid at 2.30am (AEDT) on a family home at Epping in Melbourne's northern suburbs.

Police said they also seized 250kg of white powder, 300 vials of steroids, numerous bottles of methadone and about 200 litres of various chemicals from the home.

Detective Inspector Steve Smith, of the drug taskforce, told reporters the situation was unusual because illicit drug manufacturers normally used "pseudo runners" to acquire commercial pseudoephedrine in small amounts from pharmacies.

Pseudoephedrine is used in the illicit manufacture of methamphetamine, or speed.

"We don't know how this man came by packaging of that sheer size," he said.

"It has certainly not come over the counter. It appears to be a one-off enterprise for this fellow, who has significant abilities to obtain large amounts of pills.

"We will re-group and examine the packaging, pills, names and brands to ascertain its origins and whether other people are involved in helping this guy."

The tablets were stored in plain plastic bags and boxes, rather than commercial packaging.

Det Insp Smith said the drugs and chemicals would have been processed for criminal elements in clandestine laboratories to create more than 150kg of illicit amphetamines.

Although chemical companies and pharmacists have adopted anti-diversion programs to stop the illegal spread of pseudoephedrine, the scale of Tuesday's seizure was beyond their scope, he said.

"It's also very troubling to find something of this size and nature can be in a house in suburbia," Det Insp Smith said.

"But it's pleasing to get them off the market and we may well have starved a number of labs of their main chemicals."

John Gonzalez, 36, was charged with trafficking a commercial quantity of a drug of dependence.

Chief Magistrate Ian Gray remanded him in custody to appear in March in the Melbourne Magistrates Court.

Mr Gonzalez's wife - who police say they have no plans to charge at this stage - and two primary school-aged children were asleep in the Epping house when the raid took place.

"Clearly it's a recipe for disaster to have tablets available and lying around loose for the children and other children visiting if they swallow them," Det Insp Smith said.

"Neighbours might have seen people coming and going carrying out large boxes and identified pharmaceuticals, chemicals or bulk medicines that would arouse suspicions and they should report that."

A Holden Commodore, three plasma TVs, and a number of air conditioners were among items seized as possible proceeds of crime.

Tell us your story

Have you got a story you would like to have featured on ACA? Share your story with us here

Extras Wanted

We're always on the hunt for confident and fun families to help us with our stories. We often use volunteers to road test everything from shampoo to champagne
  • Real estate
  • Retail deals
  • Tracy interviews
  • Investigations
  • Beauty and health
  • Cooking

How can we help?

What kind of stories would you like to see more of?
    submit feedback
    Please select an option
    Thank you for submitting your feedback.
    > Add yours
    Loading comments...
      • You with comment:
        Please login below
        Guest login
        login
        Or Permanent login through third party account
        You are connected via
        Enter a display name and postcode tied to your account
        Please choose a location nearest you
        Guest settings
        Name: StuartMacKenzie
        Location:
        Use your facebook display picture
        Post messages to your facebook wall
        sign out
        update
        Enter your comment
        submit comment
        Please enter a valid postcode
      • Thank you for contributing to the ACA website. Please note contributions on this site will be moderated and there may be a delay before they can be viewed on our site.
      • Your contributions must be on-topic and constructive and not contributed with the intention of disrupting our online community or causing harm to anyone.
      • We reserve the right not to use, or to remove, your contributions on this site at our discretion if they:

      • Defame any person.
      • Breach anyone’s intellectual property rights or confidentiality.
      • Breach privacy laws.
      • Breach anti-discrimination laws.
      • Contain any links, advertising or marketing material or spam.
      • Stalk or harass any person.
      • Encourage or promote or assist the commission of any illegal act.
      • Contain excessively coarse language or content.
      • Exceed the 120 character limit.
      • For further information about the ninemsn Terms of Use click here

      A Current Affair
      hosted by tracy grimshaw
      7:00PM weeknights on
      ACA Loves Twitter
      It's easy to tweet ACA on Twitter.
      You can use your normal Twitter account details to login to the ACA site and start commenting. You can even choose to post your comments from the ACA site simultaneously on your Twitter page.