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Old 15-11-2011, 21:36   #16
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Re: Cruising Yacht Busted for Drug Smuggling in Oz

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Originally Posted by TassieBloke View Post
@ AussieGeoff

I assume you are directing your statement to my comments above.

Having re-read my post, I can see that it could be misinterpreted to read that the ACS may have 'planted' the narcotics; my apologies for that. This is of course nonsense to think that this was planted by the ACS, and I would take exception to such a statement as well.

For the record, I want to state that was in no way my meaning. Our boys & girls in the ACS have difficult enough time covering our very long coastline as it is, and I do respect the great job that they do.

My intention was the raise the possibilty of an owner of a yacht participating in a rally, having narcotics planted by nefarious types during their absence (trips ashore, party going etc) given that the destinantion of the rally is known. It could provide an opportunity to turn an unsuspecting yacht owner into a means of transport without taking any risks (other than loss of the narcotics). And yes, 300kgs is a lot, so in this instance perhaps not so plausable, however in smaller volumes, an entirely plausible situation.

Hope this clears things.

Bloke
I understood what you said and know for a fact people will plant drugs on others just for spite,had it done to me...dont know if it was a worker at the airport or the little s*%t that got upset with me for not giving him my last pair of Levis.Another time had the fine folks from Indonesia lace clothing and book bags that I had bought for resale with chemicals that caused bad reactions to the eyes and sinuses..lots of other not so nice things too..thats why they tell people not to take packages from strangers at airports...DVC
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Old 15-11-2011, 21:40   #17
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Re: Cruising Yacht Busted for Drug Smuggling in Oz

A question of jurisdiction in part perhaps, but it's more likely they wanted to nab the Australian end of the operation. Two places were raided and they got a large quantity of money (over 3.5 million apparently) as well as the personnel involved. Makes sense to me. Not to mention that intent doesn't constitute a crime. Until they bought it into Australian waters, no crime was committed under Australian law.

But I suspect the desire to take out the on shore personnel and thus kill the whole operation was more the intent. The smugglers waited some weeks after (as far as they knew) clearing Customs with the boat moored at Bundy before moving in to remove the drugs. They must have felt perfectly safe.

I'd like to have seen their faces when they were busted. Must have been a complete surprise, I've no doubt they thought they'd gotten away with it.

AussieGeoff
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Old 15-11-2011, 21:45   #18
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Re: Cruising Yacht Busted for Drug Smuggling in Oz

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If they were watching them for so long, why did they wait until they got to OZ before busting them??
So as to catch the distribution side of the operation. Apparrently got a few and over $3.5 mill in cash.

I believe they first got wind of the operation by picking up amounts of money being moved offshore at banking level. Will proberbly be watching all of us moving money to purchase boats overseas.

That was how they detected another operation out of Mackay earlier this year.
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Old 15-11-2011, 22:40   #19
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Re: Cruising Yacht Busted for Drug Smuggling in Oz

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I believe they first got wind of the operation by picking up amounts of money being moved offshore at banking level. Will proberbly be watching all of us moving money to purchase boats overseas.
Yes when we purchased our boat in Tahiti earlier this year we were forced to use a series of smaller transactions to transfer our payment into the seller's bank account in France, due to an admin bungle.

We were delayed for several days and learned that the French Constabulary were holding the transaction while they verified their authenticity.
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Old 16-11-2011, 00:29   #20
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Re: Cruising Yacht Busted for Drug Smuggling in Oz

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Originally Posted by Steve Pope View Post
If they were watching them for so long, why did they wait until they got to OZ before busting them??
From my interpretation of the news reports, suspicion was raised when large amounts of cash were detected being laundered and sent overseas in February. This meant the authorities were in a position to know that something was going down, but not exactly where or when. It wasn't until they physically followed the money laundering bad guys to the boat for the drugs exchange that everyone got busted. If this is true it indicates the bad guys were running a very (almost) covert and professional operation.

I also read that 2 million in cash was found onboard the boat as well, so that would kind of discount any theories that the crew were unaware of what they were carrying in their bilge.
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Old 16-11-2011, 11:59   #21
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Re: Cruising Yacht Busted for Drug Smuggling in Oz

They certainly didn't seem like big spenders when they were in Port Vila. Pretty low key but they did have one altercation with a neighbouring boat that led to the skipper threatening to call the police. I found out yesterday the police were actually carrying out surveillance 50' away on a friend's boat.
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Old 16-11-2011, 12:15   #22
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Re: Cruising Yacht Busted for Drug Smuggling in Oz

We had friends who were two slips down when the bust happened. Twenty customs agents and federal police swept down all at once and boarded the boat.
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Old 16-11-2011, 14:00   #23
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Re: Cruising Yacht Busted for Drug Smuggling in Oz

bet that took care of what to watch/do for the evening......
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Old 17-11-2011, 19:30   #24
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Re: Cruising Yacht Busted for Drug Smuggling in Oz

I was enjoying my coffee at Nambawan cafe here in Vila this morning watching another yacht, apparently owned by the same guy as the Aussie bust. Customs, navy, police and divers onboard
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Old 18-11-2011, 05:27   #25
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Re: Cruising Yacht Busted for Drug Smuggling in Oz

Well done to custom officers.
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Old 18-11-2011, 06:36   #26
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Re: Cruising Yacht Busted for Drug Smuggling in Oz

So Friday Freedom, a 17m steel ketch, i guess the government will seize it and sell it at a later date. Nice boat for a genuine cruiser, but i think that it want a careful cleaning before sailing it to Indonesia.
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Old 25-11-2011, 18:54   #27
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Re: Cruising Yacht Busted for Drug Smuggling in Oz

Lets hope they spend a long time in prison.
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Old 04-12-2011, 07:33   #28
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Re: Cruising Yacht Busted for Drug Smuggling in Oz

legalise drugs and this will not happen,or am i missing something here?
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Old 04-12-2011, 12:57   #29
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Re: Cruising Yacht Busted for Drug Smuggling in Oz

When we were in French Polynesia a long time ago, a boat that had been seized for drug running and then auctioned came through. Even though the boat had been auctioned and had new owners who had nothing to do with the drug trade, it hadn't been taken off the Drug Watch List or the various countries hadn't bothered to update their lists. Anyhow, they were hassled unmercifully in almost every new country they sailed into. Ranged from short confinement, to a thorough shakedown of the boat, to continuing surveilance and harassment. Believe it had been a number of years since the auction so the records should have been cleared but it didn't seem to matter. The new owners didn't think the realitively cheap price they paid for the boat was worth the headaches that the boats history brought.
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Old 04-12-2011, 13:07   #30
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Re: Cruising Yacht Busted for Drug Smuggling in Oz

Did they change it's name?
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