Ballarat busts past $billion$ milestone

The crew of HMAS Ballarat has stopped illegal narcotics in excess of AUD$1 billion* from funding terrorism and other illegal activity.

FILE PHOTO (4 May 2019): HMAS Ballarat’s boarding party conduct a boarding of a suspicious dhow. Photo by Leading Seaman Bradley Darvill.

The combined hauls were confiscated in 10 separate seizure operations, with the latest occurring on 10 May 2019.

During this latest seizure, the boarding team took custody of more than 3tonnes of hashish with an estimated street value of AUD$53 million*.

The Australian Navy frigate has now seized nearly 13tonnes of hashish, 1.4 tonnes of heroin and a small quantity of methyl amphetamines, with a combined street value of AUD$1.073 billion*.

HMAS Ballarat has conducted 31 boardings since deploying to the Middle East on Operation Manitou in November last year.

Operation Manitou is the name for the Australian Government’s contribution to international efforts to promote maritime security, stability and prosperity in the Middle East.

This is the second deployment to the Middle East for HMAS Ballarat and the 67th rotation of a Royal Australian Navy vessel in the region since 1990.

Commanding Officer HMAS Ballarat Commander Paul Johnson said the ship’s company had contributed to the long history of Australia’s commitment to the Combined Maritime Forces in the Middle East.

“Our commitment safeguards our access to international trading routes and ensures we deal with threats before they become serious risks to Australia,” Commander Johnson said.




*Note: This calculation is based on the Australian Criminal Intelligence Commission Illicit Drug Data Report 2015–16figures for Cannabis Resin (Hashish) @ AUD$50,000 per kilo (p215) and Heroin @ AUD$300,000 per kilo (p216).










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Posted by Brian Hartigan

Managing Editor Contact Publishing Pty Ltd PO Box 3091 Minnamurra NSW 2533 AUSTRALIA

One thought on “Ballarat busts past $billion$ milestone

  • 03/06/2019 at 6:47 pm

    The RAN may be the Senior Service but it is only on occasions like this that they get credit for their work in these types of operations. Congrats to all those ships and crews who do the dirty stuff these pirates and drug smugglers think they can get away with. Well done to all the guys and girls out there in the briney doing the hard yards.


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