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Monday, 21 February 2022
Media release

Protecting supply chains from criminal activity

​Criminals operating within Australia’s supply chain and infiltrating our borders have been put on notice following strong results from Operation Jardena, which has seen the number of Australian Border Force (ABF) officers focused on combatting this threat doubled. 

Minister for Home Affairs Karen Andrews said our border is a national asset that Australians rely on for the prosperity of our community and economy. A key focus of the operation is to increase the presence of ABF officers at sites including international airports and seaports. 

“We will not tolerate the movement of goods in and out of Australia being undermined and targeted by criminal networks. That’s why we’ve intensified efforts to shut down criminal networks actively seeking to bring illicit drugs, firearms and illegal goods and materials into Australia,” Minister Andrews said. 

“ABF officers, in partnership with federal, state and territory police, are using the latest technology and tools at their disposal to detect illegal material, including mobile x-ray units and highly trained detector dogs.

“A safe border, free from criminals is a national asset that we rely on for the prosperity of our community and economy.”

Operation Jardena was formally stood up in November 2021 and has already yielded impressive results.

“Just before Christmas, a shipping container was intercepted in Brisbane with 50 kilograms of cocaine concealed within its refrigeration unit. The cocaine was placed there by criminals offshore and it was to be removed by criminals working within the supply chain in Brisbane,” Minister Andrews said.

Operation Jardena has identified and seized tonnes of tobacco and millions of illegal cigarettes preventing criminals evading paying taxes in Australia to potentially fund crimes in Australia.

“Operation Jardena is protecting our supply chains by putting more officers on the ground at air and seaports, and within cargo handling and storage premises,” Minister Andrews said.

“Industry are important partners in stopping criminals infiltrating Australia’s supply chains and for those not complying, compliance breaches are being strictly enforced with 90 infringement notices already being issued for identified breaches since Operation Jardena began. 

“From 1 July to 30 November 2021, the ABF seized more than 4.7 tonnes of major drugs, precursors and new psychoactive substances and 260 million cigarettes and 368 tonnes of loose leaf tobacco. Operation Jardena will build on these efforts.

“These early strong results send a strong message that the Morrison Government is resolute in its mission to drive criminality from the supply chain.”