Cocaine filled vessel seized off NSW coast, one man arrested

A 27-year-old South Australian man is expected to appear in Sydney Central Local Court following the seizure of approximately 200 kilograms of cocaine allegedly located on board a vessel off the New South Wales coast.

Australian Federal Police obtained intelligence at the weekend in relation to a cargo vessel allegedly containing a large quantity of cocaine bound for Australia.

The AFP established Operation Poitiers with the New South Wales Police Force, Australian Border Force, New South Wales Crime Commission and the Australian Criminal Intelligence Commission.

Australian authorities tracked the cargo vessel, known as the MSC JOANNA as it made its way to Sydney.

Through Maritime Border Command, ABF officers provided ongoing monitoring of the vessel, including planning the aerial and on-water response.

It will be alleged in court that police enquiries into the illicit drugs and the transnational criminal syndicate behind it linked a 27-year-old Elizabeth Parks man to the alleged drug importation.

Aerial surveillance observed the Elizabeth Parks man launching a small vessel from Taren Point and meeting the MSC JOANNA off the coast of Sydney before sunrise.

Police allege 11 green lidded crates containing 199 blocks of cocaine were offloaded from the cargo vessel at sea and transported to the smaller vessel.

The smaller vessel made its way back to shore before being intercepted by New South Wales Police Force officers.

The Elizabeth Parks man was arrested at sea and conveyed to Balmain, Sydney by police vessel.

The seized cocaine has an estimated street value of $90 million.