One of the biggest organised crime syndicates in the world is reportedly importing over half the cocaine used on Australia's east coast.
One of the world's largest organised crime syndicates has infiltrated Australia.
Fairfax newspapers say the Mexican Sinaloa cartel imported more than half the cocaine used on the east coast of Australia in the past two years at a rate of about 500 kilograms a month.
It says the cartel also was behind a 240-kilogram cocaine shipment, worth an estimated 83 million dollars, intercepted in Sydney in June Australia's fifth-largest bust. Four men were charged in connection to the bust, although none are considered senior syndicate figures.
The newspapers say international law enforcement agencies, including the US Drug Enforcement Agency, believe Sinaloa has set up a well resourced business in Australia with operatives based in Sydney. The ABC reported that the cartel has had operatives in Australia for several years, and its head, Joaquin 'El Chapo' Guzman, is Mexico's most wanted man, with a $5m US bounty on his head.
Mexico is now the top embarkation point for cocaine arriving in Australia, the ABC's 7.30 Report was told by the Australian Crime Commission, with organised crime behind it.
"That activity of the sophistication and level were seeing can't be done other than by organised criminality," the CEO of the Australian Crime Commission, John Lawler, told the ABC.