HOUSTON, Texas — Members of the Sinaloa Federation, one of the most powerful and dangerous cartels from Mexico, have reportedly set up shop in Australia. A lucrative drug market has been growing in Australia during recent years, and Sinaloa members have been taking advantage of it by selling large amounts of hard narcotics like cocaine and heroin.
Australian law enforcement are working together with America’s Drug Enforcement Administration to put a stop to the cartel’s activities, according to the Herald Sun.
Chris Dawson, Australia’s Crime Commission Chief told the Sun, “”You only need to look to the violence on the streets in Mexico and the thousands of people who have died at the hands of Mexican drug cartels, to realise how dangerous these groups are. And they are now looking at Australia as a destination to facilitate their crime.”
Over the summer, one particularly concerning seizure was made. In July several firearms, $30 million worth of meth, and $2 million in cash was seized by authorities at a property in Sydney. Those charged in connection with the crime are reportedly thought to be affiliated with the Mexican cartel.
Breitbart Texas Contributing Editor and border security expert Sylvia Longmire said that Mexican cartels have been embedded in Australia for years.
“Australia has served as a very lucrative market for the Sinaloa Federation and Mexican-trafficked cocaine for several years, where profit margins can exceed 400 percent,” Longmire said. “Recent reports have suggested the Federation is supplying half of Australia’s cocaine, and such a lucrative market is a very tempting opportunity for rival organizations.”
She did point out, however, that cartels can face difficulties when trying to run an operation in a far-away country such as Australia.
“The barriers to market entry are large, as the logistics for shipping illegal drugs to Australia from Mexico can be very daunting, and extravagantly expensive,” Longmire pointed out. “But based on these reports, more Mexican criminal organizations seem willing to make the investment in order to reap the considerably large rewards.”
Indeed, the Sun reported that Mexican cartel kingpins sometimes collect $50 for an amount of heroin that would only sell for $4.50 in the United States.
A spokesperson from Australia’s federal police force reportedly said, “Criminal organisations based overseas, including Mexico, are willing to consider Australia as an option for importation and distribution of border-controlled drugs because the price they can obtain is significantly higher than in other markets.”
At this time, it is unclear exactly how Australia will handle this growing problem, and ultimately curtail the usage of illegal narcotics.
Follow Kristin Tate @KristinBTate.