A THIRD man has been charged by Coffs Harbour Region Enforcement Squad (RES) as part of an ongoing investigation into drug cultivation and distribution in the Nambucca Valley.
In April this year, officers from Coffs Harbour RES established Strike Force Anketell to investigate a criminal group involved in the large-scale cultivation, manufacture and supply of prohibited drugs across northern NSW.
Investigators were also conducting inquiries into the circumstances of a shooting at Kalang in April 2020.
Strike force investigators charged two men - aged 41 and 36 - with drug and firearms offences after they were arrested, with assistance from the Tactical Operations Unit, at a rural property west of Bellingen on Wednesday. Both men remain before the courts.
Following further inquiries, strike force investigators, assisted by the Dog Unit and the Northern Region DV High Risk Offender Team, arrested a third man - aged 42 - at a home at Bowraville just before 9am on Friday.
He was taken to Coffs Harbour Police Station, where he was charged with 13 offences including:
- Supply prohibited drug (commercial)
- Discharge firearm etc intend cause grievous bodily harm
- Use unauthorised firearm
- Possess unauthorised firearm
- Manufacture prohibited drug (commercial quantity)
- Manufacture prohibited drug (indictable quantity - not cannabis)
- Supply cannabis (indictable quantity)
- Supply prohibited drug (indictable quantity) (x2)
- Cultivate prohibited plant (commercial quantity)
- Knowingly direct activities of criminal group
- Goods suspected stolen in/on premises (motor vehicle)
Police will allege in court that the man was involved in the manufacture of illicit drugs and illegal firearms.
The man was refused bail to appear at Port Macquarie Local today.
Investigations under Strike Force Anketell are ongoing and further arrests are expected.
Anyone with information regarding the manufacture and supply of prohibited drugs is urged to contact Crime Stoppers: 1800 333-000 or https://nsw.crimestoppers.com.au. Information is treated in strict confidence. The public is reminded not to report crime via NSW Police social media pages.