How police broke up major drug trafficking ring

POLICE have smashed a major drug trafficking network whose influence had devastated a remote western Queensland town for the past two years.

Sixty police officers from across the state, including the State Drug Arm and Toowoomba and Brisbane-based dog squads raided properties in St George, Surat, Dirranbandi and Roma yesterday under the two-year-long Operation Oscar Kohl.

The operation led to the arrest of 25 people on more than 170 charges, with more expected as investigations continue in coming weeks.

Methyamphetamine was savaging communities in the south-west region, Detective Inspector Paul Hart said, and the successful raids were police fulfilling a commitment to the community.

"Ice is an insidious drug which has a devastating effect on communities, particularly those in remote and rural areas with limited access to support services," he said.

BUSTED: Police arrest an alleged drug trafficker after massive raids in St George yesterday.
BUSTED: Police arrest an alleged drug trafficker after massive raids in St George yesterday. QPS

"We made a commitment to local members of the community to address the drug issues in the area, and the closure of this operation will inject some much-needed confidence back into the community.

"While it is a satisfying result for all of the dedicated police involved, we have more work to do and we will continue to target those engaging in criminal activity and the supply of drugs across the district.

"As part of our policing response to combat the issue, officers will also continue to work with various local organisations and schools, focusing on deterrence and rehabilitation."

Vehicles, ice, cannabis, drug utensils and other equipment were also seized during the raids.

Two St George men aged 18 and 34, and a Surat man, 30, were among seven people charged with drug trafficking.

Topics:  crime drugs editors picks paul hart roma

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