Police scour coast for clues as cocaine bricks keep washing up on NSW beaches | Australia news

The mystery source of hundreds of kilograms of cocaine is yet to be found as bricks of the drug continue to wash up on NSW beaches and police scour the coastline for clues.

About 213kg of suspected cocaine has been recovered at locations spanning from the south coast to Newcastle since the days before Christmas.

Detectives are working with PolAir and Marine Area Command, as well as Australian Border Force and Surf Life Saving NSW, to seize any outstanding packages and determine their origin.

“The public are reminded to report any suspicious package to authorities,” police said in a statement on Monday.

In less than one week in late December, 124 barnacle-covered one-kilogram “bricks” of suspected cocaine were retrieved from the surf between Sydney and Newcastle.

Tuggerah Lakes police were called to Magenta Beach, on the Central Coast, on 22 December after a member of the public located a suspicious package containing 39 sealed packets.

On Christmas eve, seven more individually wrapped bricks washed up on Magenta, Pelican, Blacksmith and Avoca beaches, Pentaloon Bay and North Steyne beach.

On the morning of Boxing Day, water police were called to the Barrenjoey headland, Sydney’s most northern point, where a fisherman found a blue barrel stuffed with another 39 packets of cocaine.

Wastewater testing has previously shown Sydney has by far the highest levels of cocaine use of anywhere in the country.

However, data released by the Australian Criminal Intelligence Commission in November also showed a long-term decrease in use of the drug across all capital cities.

Cocaine use slumped during the pandemic, although it has since rebounded.

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