Cyprus police arrested a Greek Cypriot businessman, aged 30, on Friday in connection to the ecstasy-filled barbecues shipped from Limassol to Sydney.
The man, the registered owner of the barbecues which had 645 kilos of ecstasy hidden inside, will front court on Saturday. He is allegedly involved in arranging the importation of the drugs. Reports also point to the possible involvement of a second man.
The drugs were seized by Australian authorities earlier in the week and two arrests were made in connection to the haul. A Queenslander, 30, and Canadian national, 33, have been arrested in Australia for their involvement in the shipment of 200 aluminium barbecues with false base plates concealing multiple packages of drugs.
The arrests come following a six-month investigation in three countries with involvement of British nationals in the UK, Cypriots and Australians. The case began when the Cyprus’ drug squad tipped off its Australian counterparts about the potential large shipment of MDMA, known as ecstasy, bound for Sydney from Limassol.
Australian officers swapped the MDMA for another substance and followed the delivery of the container to a warehouse in Sydney where the drugs were prepared for distribution.
The drugs in the container have an estimated street value of $61 million.