In May 2012, the CMC closed the covert phase of an 18-month investigation codenamed Operation Storm. The investigation dismantled a major drug distribution network, primarily trafficking in heroin, operating from the Sunshine Coast to the Gold Coast.
Based on conservative estimates, it is believed that the network has been responsible for distributing at least 20kg of heroin, with an estimated street value of $25 million, dating back to 2006.
The investigation commenced in December 2010 and involved collaboration with the Queensland Police Service, New South Wales Drug Squad and the Australian Federal Police (Serious and Organised Crime team).
Related enforcement activities and convictions
- On 29 June 2012, two 53-year-old north Brisbane women were arrested and charged with trafficking, primarily in heroin in relation to the closure of Operation Storm. They first appeared in the Brisbane Magistrates Court on 20 July 2012 and will reappear on 13 May 2013.
- On 23 June 2012, a 52-year-old Labrador woman was charged with receiving property obtained from trafficking in dangerous drugs. It is alleged that she was in possession of a large amount of property and money which had been obtained through the sale and distribution of drugs by the primary target of Operation Storm. The woman first appeared in the Brisbane Magistrates Court on 13 July 2012 and is due to reappear on 13 May 2013.
- On 4 June, a 58-year-old Marsden man was issued with a notice to appear in court for unlawful possession of a category B firearm. The man pleaded guilty and was sentenced to 6 months good behaviour and fined $150.
- On 4 June 2012, a 42-year-old Mt Gravatt man was charged with trafficking in dangerous drugs. The man first appeared in the Brisbane Magistrates Court on 12 November 2012 and will reappear on 13 May 2013.
- On 30 May, a 23-year-old Marsden man was arrested and charged with trafficking in dangerous drugs. The man was remanded in custody and is due to appear in court on 19 November 2012.
- On 26 May, 42-year-old Gold Coast man, Mr Sadri Ahmetaj was arrested and charged with trafficking in and possession of dangerous drugs. This closed the covert phase of an 18-month CMC investigation, codenamed Operation Storm. The Gold Coast man was the principal target of Operation Storm and is believed to be central to a multi-million dollar drug distribution network, primarily trafficking in heroin, operating across South East Queensland.
On 10 August 2012, in the Brisbane Supreme Court, the CMC’s Proceeds of Crime team were granted a restraining order targeting Mr Ahmetaj’s interest in a range of assets. The total value of the restraining order is $216 195. The assets include two Gold Coast properties, five cars (including a 2004 Bentley Continental GT Coupe) and a boat.