When the Australian Border Force X-rayed a shipping container containing a 1960 Bentley S2, they found much more than a gorgeous vintage vehicle. Smuggled inside the car’s various components were pounds of meth and cocaine, all of which had been shipped into Port Botany, a suburb of southeastern Sydney, from Canada, local police report.
After the X-ray, police went digging. They found meth hidden behind the headlights of the Bentley, at which point the border police turned the matter over to the New South Wales Police Force. The car underwent a systematic dismantling, during which time a grand total of 354.94 pounds of meth (161 kg) and 66.13 pounds of cocaine (60 kg) were discovered inside.
Australian police estimate this cost around $155 million Australian dollars — or $106 million here in the United States.
Instead of seizing the Bentley right away, though, the police let it carry on to its final destination, the National Post reports. When it arrived, the police force’s press release says they executed a search warrant on a home “following extensive inquiries,” where they seized a Ford Focus, mobile phones, and a computer.
Two men were arrested. One was charged with seven offenses, including “importing commercial quantity border-controlled drug, dealing with property proceeds of crime, possessing a large commercial drug supply, and participating in a criminal group to contribute to criminal activity.” The other faced six similar charges.
Following further leads, the police also stopped a Toyota Prado, inside of which was 4.85 pounds of meth and more than $760,000 in cash (or about $1.1 million in Australian dollars) stowed under the cargo area. Both the driver and passenger of the vehicle were arrested, and all four suspects in this case are being held without bail.
According to the National Post, Australia has become a hub for drug smuggling, with many illicit substances coming in from both Canada and all over the world, thanks to the country’s high demand for drugs and its subsequently high street prices.