A Callala Beach man accused of operating a $17 million drug ring through the dark web has appeared before court with police laying an additional six charges against him.
Cody Ward, 25, was charged at Goulburn Police Station on Tuesday with four counts of import commercial quantity of border-controlled drugs, and two counts of import marketable quantity of border-controlled drugs.
The matter was mentioned in Nowra Local Court on Friday and adjourned until May 31.
Ward, Shanese Koullias, 24, and her young sister Patricia, 20, were charged in February this year over the the large-scale drug supply across Australia using the dark web and postal services.
Police allege Ward was operating as an online vendor and supplying prohibited drugs, including cocaine, MDMA, LSD, cannabis, methylamphetamine , amphetamine, and prescription medication.
In April 2018, detectives from the State Crime Command's Criminal Groups Squad established Strike Force Royden to investigate criminal networks involved in the supply of illicit drugs in NSW.
They identified a "technologically-sophisticated online drug distribution network" operating from the South Coast.
At the time of those arrests, Acting Assistant Commissioner Stuart Smith told reporters in Sydney that the case was "probably the first and largest penetration of the dark web in Australia".
He said it had resulted in "taking out a syndicate who have dealt around $17 million of drugs across the nation".
During raids on five properties, officers recovered 2.5kg of white powder, 200g of MDMA, more than 100,000 LSD tabs and a significant quantity of Xanax made to look like candy, Acting Assistant Commissioner Smith said. Sophisticated computer equipment, more than $80,000 cash and several vehicles including a Mercedes-Benz were also seized.
A Maserati also believed to be owned by Ward was later found burn out west of Nowra.
Shanese Koullias faces six charges of supplying a prohibited drug commercial quantity, knowingly participate in a criminal group and knowingly deal with the proceeds of crime, and Patricia Koullias five counts of supplying a prohibited drug commercial quantity and knowingly participate in a criminal group.
Their matters were also mentioned in Nowra Local Court on Friday. They remain bail refused and will reappear May 31.
"NSW Police Force has some of the most sophisticated technology and resources at our disposal; you can no longer try to hide the peddling of poisons on the Dark Web," Mr Smith said.
Soon after the arrests the NSW Crime Commission successfully sought to freeze the assets of Ward and Shanese Koullias. The Commission applied to the NSW Supreme Court for an urgent freezing order on cars, bank accounts and properties belonging to the pair.