Holbrook speeding case leads to 200K drug find

A SPEEDING motorist on the Hume Highway at Holbrook has led police to a methamphetamine haul with a street value of up to $200,000.

Documents found in the car led detectives to a Melbourne storage unit, which contained 200 kilograms of a substance used in the manufacture of the drug.

Yesterday in Albury Local Court magistrate Tony Murray remanded the driver, Shady Gerges, 25, and another man, Huy Nguyen Anh Le, 21, in custody to March 10.

A highway patrol officer stopped a car near Holbrook at 7am on Tuesday.

The Melbourne men were headed north and police allege that north of Mullengandra their car travelled up to 128km/h.

A police check on Gerges’ licence status revealed he had drug-related matters in Victoria.

Ammunition mainly for pistols was found in the car, police allege.

Police say a beige crystal substance was in a vacuum-sealed bag in a subwoofer box fixed into the boot near the back seat.

Officers had the car towed to Albury and later found another clear plastic bag with 508 grams of methamphetamine in a compartment within the subwoofer.

Before these finds, Le allegedly told them: “You won’t find my fingerprints on any bags”.

In total, officers allegedly found about 600 grams of drugs with an estimated street value of between $150,000 and $200,000.

An even bigger find came when police found documents in the car related to a storage unit in Braybrook in Melbourne.

Drug squad detectives from Albury notified Victoria Police. Detectives from Footscray went to the unit with a search warrant and found 200 kilograms of phosphoric acid — a prescribed precursor for making methamphetamine.

Gerges, of Coolaroo, and Le, of Maidstone, appeared before Mr Murray each charged with supplying more than a commercial quantity of drugs, supplying more than an indictable quantity of drugs, two counts of drug possession and possessing ammunition without holding a licence.

It was alleged 399 ammunition rounds of 32 calibre, 22 calibre and 9mm rounds were found in the car along with a shoulder holster for a pistol.

Officers discovered a broken crack pipe in the car along with a small foil containing methamphetamine.

Neither Gerges, who works as a barista, nor his unemployed passenger was able to tell police who owned the car.

Gerges claimed he had borrowed it from a friend’s brother for a day trip to Sydney to visit family.

A mobile phone seized from him is alleged to have contained numerous text messages which officers believe were related to supplying prohibited drugs.

Two phones belonging to Le were checked after he provided access information and they are alleged to have had similar messages.