Rodeo party drug bust

Townsville Bulletin - - NEWS - CHRIS MCMA­HON chris. mcma­hon@ news. com. au

PARTY drugs sus­pected to have been des­tined for the Mount Isa Rodeo have been seized in tar­geted raids by po­lice.

A quan­tity of pow­dered MDMA and cash was found as part of Op­er­a­tion Papa Jour­ney, set up to tar­get drug use at Aus­tralia’s big­gest rodeo.

The drugs, with a street value of about $ 6000, and $ 10,000 cash were seized in raids this week, with po­lice ar­rest­ing 10 peo­ple on 16 charges.

Mount Isa CIB Plain Clothes Se­nior Con­sta­ble Chris Cronin said it was a sig­nif­i­cant bust for the re­gion, head­ing into their big­gest event of the year. “It is a pretty sig­nif­i­cant quan­tity of MDMA, or ec­stasy,” Con­sta­ble Cronin said.

“It’s sig­nif­i­cant for out here be­cause it is hard to get drugs out here … and about $ 10,000 cash was seized.

“It was a tar­geted op­er­a­tion lead­ing into the rodeo to try to reduce drunk and drug vi­o­lence ... I can say th­ese drugs were des­tined for the rodeo and we were able to in­ter­cept it be­fore then.

“They weren’t pills as such – it was in pow­der form to be put in cap­sules, and it was roughly enough to make about 200 cap­sules.”

In­ves­ti­ga­tions are con­tin­u­ing into how the drugs got into the city.

Pre­vi­ous busts in­di­cate they could have come in nu­mer­ous ways, whether along the high­ways, through the mail or by plane.

“There are a num­ber of ways it could have come in, so we can’t say at this stage the way it has come in this time,” Sen Con­sta­ble Cronin said.

“The crim­i­nals take ad­van­tage of the area’s vast­ness to bring in the il­licit sub­stances.”

He said a 17- year- old was the youngest per­son charged in the raids, with the ma­jor­ity of the in­tel­li­gence lead­ing up to the ar­rests com­ing from the com­mu­nity.

“All the in­for­ma­tion came from Crime Stop­pers, which proves it works and we would urge peo­ple to call Crime Stop­pers if they have in­for­ma­tion on drug crime in our re­gion.”

If you have any in­for­ma­tion about drug crime in Mount Isa, con­tact Crime Stop­pers on 1800 333 000.

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