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Two Years Behind Bars
A 31-year-old man has been sentenced to more than two years’ jail with a non-parole period of 13 months after importing almost 419 grams of ephedrine in 2016 with a street value worth an estimated $80,000. The man was sentenced last week in Ballarat Circuit Court after pleading guilty to one count of importing a commercial quantity of a border controlled precursor, one count of attempting to traffic a drug of dependence and one count of possession of cannabis.

In April last year, Australian Border Force (ABF) officers x-rayed a package originating from New Delhi, resulting in anomalies being detected. ABF officers examined the consignment and discovered a concealment of ephedrine in the lining of garments from a dry cleaning bag from New Delhi.

In June last year, ABF officers and the Victorian Police executed search and seizure warrants at a rural property in Parwan, Victoria. During the search, a clandestine laboratory was discovered as well as items used to manufacture methamphetamine. Drug precursor chemicals were seized along with glassware containing traces of manufactured methamphetamine. ABF officers also seized a mobile phone containing details of the importation and instructions on how to manufacture methamphetamine.

Ephedrine is used as a precursor agent in the manufacture of illegal amphetamine substances, such as ice.

Assistant Commissioner Wayne Buchhorn said the ABF would continue to target individuals who have no regard for people’s lives. “Stopping these substances at the border means we’re disrupting the local manufacture of methamphetamine and preventing it from reaching the community,” Assistant Commissioner Buchhorn said.