A 32-year-old Old Erowal Bay man has become the fifth individual to be arrested as part of an extensive Australian Border Force (ABF) investigation into a tobacco smuggling syndicate in Sydney.
ABF investigators arrested Wai Poh Ng at Sydney Airport on Monday, August 28 upon his arrival on a flight from Thailand.
They allege Ng is the ringleader of a syndicate which attempted to import illicit cigarettes into Australia back in June.
On June 8, ABF officers intercepted a container originating from Malaysia declared as boxes of paper cups, however officers will allege the boxes contained more than 4.5 million cigarettes.
The container was delivered to an address in Wetherill Park, where five individuals began unpacking the container.
ABF investigators arrested three men and a woman, while a fourth man was identified as an unlawful non-citizen.
The four individuals who were arrested in June have all been charged with possessing tobacco products, knowing that the goods were imported with the intention of defrauding revenue and have been refused bail.
They all appeared before court and have been refused bail, while the unlawful non-citizen has now been removed from Australia.
Ng appeared before court on August 29 charged with importing tobacco products with the intention of defrauding revenue and evading payment of duty.
He did not apply for bail before Magistrate Les Mabbutt in Central Local Court, which was formally refused.
All five are due to face Fairfield Local Court on October 17.