Tuesday, 25 June, 2019

Man Charged Over Suspicious Packages Sent To Consulates

A firefighter carries a hazardous material bag into the Korean Consulate in Melbourne on Wednesday A firefighter carries a hazardous material bag into the Korean Consulate in Melbourne on Wednesday
Pablo Mccormick | 10 January, 2019, 17:32

7 News reporter Cassie Zervos told Nick McCallum the Australian Federal Police arrested Avan last night.

The Australian Federal Police have confirmed the man was arrested at his home in northern Victoria on Wednesday night and charged with sending risky articles to be carried by a postal service.

The AFP said assistance from Australia Post had been "crucial to the outcome of the investigation".

He was charged with sending unsafe articles to be carried by a postal service and is scheduled to appear before Melbourne Magistrate's Court on Thursday. The accused faced the Melbourne Magistrates' Court this afternoon.

Police allege he sent 38 parcels with a substance from his home in Shepparton, Victoria, but said the exact composition of the substance is still being determined.

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Australian police have arrested a man suspected of sending more than two dozen suspicious packages to embassies and consulates throughout the country, authorities said Thursday in Australia.

"Forensic police have spent a large part of today raiding his Shepparton home".

Only 29 of the 38 packages have been discovered so far, but federal police say they have put processes in place to recover the outstanding parcels safely.

The matter is due to return to court on 4 March. The offense carries a maximum 10-year jail term.

Emergency services were called to French, Greek, Indian, Italian, New Zealand, Pakistani, South Korean, Spanish, Swiss and US consulates in Melbourne on January 9.

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At least two consulates in Melbourne did not contact authorities about packages until they received an email from the Australian government. Victoria police said they believed the incidents were targeted and did not impact the general community.

Australia's Department of Foreign Affairs had raised the alarm with all diplomatic missions in Canberra on Tuesday after similar incidents were reported at offices in Sydney and the Australian Capital Territory.

On Wednesday, emergency services raced to a string of diplomatic facilities in Melbourne which had received packages containing suspected hazardous material.

The first parcel was received at the Argentinian consulate in Sydney on Monday and contained powder in clear plastic bags inside an envelope.

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