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International people smuggling syndicate disrupted by the Australian Federal Police and international law enforcement agencies



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THE HON. JASON CLARE MP MINISTER FOR HOME AFFAIRS MINISTER FOR JUSTICE MINISTER FOR DEFENCE MATERIEL

MEDIA RELEASE

27 March 2012

International people smuggling syndicate disrupted by the Australian Federal Police and international law enforcement agencies

Minister for Home Affairs and Justice Jason Clare has today congratulated the Australian Federal Police (AFP) on the arrest of four Australian-based men alleged to be organisers of an international people smuggling syndicate.

A 37-year-old man, a 42-year-old man, a 19-year-old man and a 32-year-old man were charged with serious people smuggling offences in Sydney and Melbourne.

This was an international operation involving law enforcement agencies from Malaysia, Thailand and Indonesia and resulted in the arrest of a man in Thailand.

The Australian Federal Police’s People Smuggling Strike Team conducted an eight month investigation resulting in the execution of seven search warrants and these four arrests in Australia.

It is alleged that those arrested were key organisers and facilitators of a people smuggling syndicate responsible for planning and facilitating the unlawful arrival of numerous people to Australia.

“This is an important breakthrough - disrupting an alleged international people smuggling syndicate,” Mr Clare said.

“These arrests show the importance of working together with law enforcement agencies in our region.”

This is an ongoing investigation and further arrests and charges in Australia and overseas have not been ruled out.

Members of the community with information about people smuggling activities should report it to the AFP on 1800 813 784, or via Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.

Media contact: Korena Flanagan - 0418 251 316