US authorities have confiscated almost a billion dollars' worth of methamphetamine bound for Australia in the largest-ever seizure of the drug on American soil, Australian police announced on Friday after a joint operation.
Around 1.7 tonnes of meth was seized in California on January 9, along with smaller amounts of cocaine and heroin, CNN quoted the Australian Federal Police (AFP) as saying.
The estimated street value of the meth was A$1.29 billion ($911 million) and was also the largest-ever shipment intended for Australia.
On Thursday, six people were arrested in the states of Victoria and New South Wales allegedly involved with the US-based crime syndicate believed behind the record-breaking shipment.
"Hundreds of thousands of dollars of proceeds of crime was located during the search warrant in Woodstock, and about 6.5 kg of (meth) was found at a property in Keilor Downs," the AFP said in a statement.
Three of those arrested in Australia will appear at Melbourne Magistrates Court later on Friday.
"By stopping this, we have ensured criminals will not profit from the immense pain these drugs would have caused our community," said Bruce Hill, a spokesman for the AFP organised crime unit.
James Carouso, the US acting ambassador to Australia, said that "this historic seizure highlights just how important the US-Australian partnership is in protecting Americans and Australians alike. Every day, US and Australian law enforcement officers work together to keep us all safe".
Last month, police in Australia arrested cabin crew for Malaysia-based carrier Malindo Air on accusations they helped smuggle heroin and meth worth millions of dollars from Asia to Australian cities, as part of a multinational syndicate.
(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)