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Mastermind bust

THE alleged masterminds of a widespread drug network involving over 50,000 customers were among 16 charged last week, including men from Merrylands and Guildford, after police executed 18 warrants in sweeping raids across Sydney under Strike Force Wessex.

CLEANING up the the widespread ‘dial-a-dealer’ network which involved over 50,000 customers, police say the alleged masterminds were among 16 charged last week, including men from Merrylands and Guildford.
Strike Force Wessex was established by State Crime Command’s Criminal Groups Squad and the NSW Crime Commission to investigate alleged Organised Criminal Networks (OCNs) involved in drug supply, shutting down 26 ‘drug phones’ earlier last month.
Strike force detectives executed a search warrant in Guildford about 5.40am last Wednesday where they arrested a 30-year-old man.
He was taken to Granville Police Station where he was charged with 33 offences relating to alleged kidnapping, participating in a criminal group and commercial drug supply.
Strike force detectives then executed a search warrant in Merrylands about 6.30am where they arrested a 25-year-old man.
He was charged with four offences relating to participating in a criminal group and dealing with the proceeds of crime.
Both men were refused bail and are before the courts.
Deputy Commissioner David Hudson said police efforts had eliminated what was left of the criminal network in Australia.
“In May 2022, we targeted this group through Strike Force Sugarcane; charging 41 people and forcing many players overseas,” he said.
“This latest operation has cleaned up what was left of them on our shores.”
Detective Superintendent Grant Taylor conceded the conflict between this criminal group and its rival has been resolved as a result of these arrests.
“The antagonism between this criminal network and its rival came down to the territorial need to control the drug trade in certain parts of Sydney,” he said.
“But with those phones now out of play – and a number of those alleged to have had control of those phones behind bars – we anticipate that conflict has been eradicated.”
Investigations are continuing; anyone with information should call 1800 333 000 or nsw.crimestoppers.com.au.