Stolen e-tags ‘worth $2.2m’

A MAN arrested in Punchbowl last week has been charged with 35 fraud-related offences, and participating in a criminal group, during an investigation into a fraudulent scheme worth over $2.2 million.

Strike Force Aratula was established in January 2024 to investigate an organised criminal network allegedly selling e-tags linked to falsified payment methods, such as fraudulent credit cards, obtained on the dark web – which police believe had been in operation for up to five years, with 800 tags in circulation and the majority sold to taxi drivers.
Police will allege in court the syndicate harvested up to 10,000 compromised identities and banking details – which were linked to the tags – from an international website for approximately $150,000.
Also charged were a 37-year-old man with 204 fraud-related offences, dealing with the proceeds of crime and participate in a criminal group, and a 38-year-old man with 32 fraud-related offences, accessory before the fact of dealing with proceeds of crime and participate in a criminal group.
During the searches, police allegedly located and seized 74 e-tags, numerous toll notices, electronic devices, $25,000 in cash and a 2019 Mercedes AMG coupe.
Following the arrests, a compliance operation was carried out at a taxi marshalling area at Sydney Airport’s domestic terminal, where police spoke to 200 taxi drivers and confiscated 12 e-tags believed to be a part of the fraudulent scheme. Drivers identified with a fraudulent tag were spoken to and released pending further inquiries.
Commander of State Crime Command’s Financial Crimes Squad, Detective Superintendent Gordon Arbinja, said this investigation was standing up for the honest people in the State who did the right thing.
Anyone with information that may assist investigators is urged to contact Crime Stoppers: 1800 333 000 or