On Friday 26th July 2019, NSW police investigators executed a search warrant at a home on Centennial Avenue, Lane Cove (near Sutherland Street). This raid led to three men being arrested.
During a search of the home, police allegedly located a small amount of a crystal substance and white powder, as well as ammunition, a crossbow, taser, flick knife, two slingshots, an extendable baton, and throwing knives.
Property, believed to be the proceeds of crime, including mountain bikes, tools, and clothing were also seized.
One man was charged with ongoing supply of prohibited drug, possess prohibited weapon (x6), deal with proceeds of crime (x2), possess ammunition, goods in custody, and drive whilst disqualified.
Strike Force Yugari was established by North Shore Police Area Command to investigate the suspected supply of prohibited drugs within the Sydney Metropolitan area and the raid was linked to this investigation.
As a result of the Lane Cove arrests, police located an Aladdin’s cave of stolen property in Pyrmont.
North Shore Strike Force Yugari detectives, assisted by officers from Sydney City Police Area Command, conducted a search of a storage area in the basement of an apartment complex at Pyrmont, about 9.30am on Monday 29 July 2019.
Investigators located an elaborate “cave”, under the building, which also included one rainwater tank which was converted to a bedroom, another which was in the early stages of established as a hydroponic cannabis setup.
There was also an array of shelving systems being used to store more than 250 items of property – including electrical, sporting, garden equipment and power tools – which are alleged to have been stolen from storage units at Pyrmont and Sydney CBD between February and June 2019.
The location underwent an extensive forensic examination before all the property was removed.
Following inquiries, strike force detectives applied for and were granted an arrest warrant for a 42-year-old man.
About 1.15am on Sunday 18 August 2019, a Holden ute drove off from officers from Nepean Police Area Command on Timgalen Avenue, South Penrith.
A pursuit was initiated, but police lost sight of the vehicle near Batt Street and Regentville Road.
About 2pm, officers from Sutherland Police Area Command located the ute unattended on Sutherland Lane, Sutherland, before arresting the 42-year-old man at a nearby licensed premises.
During a subsequent search of the vehicle, police located ice, cannabis, drug paraphernalia, and stolen number plates.
He was taken to Sutherland Police Station and charged with receive property-theft, destroy or damage property, and conspiracy to cultivate cannabis for commercial purpose, police pursuit – not stop – drive at speed, two counts of possess prohibited drug, goods in personal custody suspected being stolen, use unregistered vehicle, and drive with expired licence.
Police will allege in court that the man, who was a building manager at the apartment complex, was residing in the cave, using it to store stolen property, and was in the process of establishing a hydroponic set-up to cultivate cannabis.
He was refused bail and is next due to appear at Sutherland Local Court on Monday 30 September 2019.
Strike force detectives are now in the process of returning the stolen items to their rightful owners and are investigating if any of the property in the Aladdin’s Cave was stolen from Lane Cove residents. If you have had electrical, sporting, garden equipment and power tools stolen from your premises in Lane Cove you might like to contact police.
We have obtained video from the police – you will see that they certainly liked to steel tools.
Investigations under Strike Force Yugari are continuing.
Anyone with information that may assist Strike Force Yugari investigators is urged to contact Crime Stoppers: 1800 333 000 or https://nsw.crimestoppers.com.au. Information is treated in strict confidence. The public is reminded not to report crime via NSW Police social media pages.