A woman has been sentenced to 2 years 11 months imprisonment today (Friday, 23 June, 2023) by the Parramatta District Court for money laundering offences as a part of Taskforce Avarus.
The Sydney woman, 59, who was regarded as an “auntie” in an alleged Vietnamese organised crime network, was the signatory to 89 individual bank accounts and responsible for the coordination of criminal funds throughout Australia.
The AFP arrested the woman following a search warrant of two units at a complex in Carramar, New South Wales, on 13 December, 2021. At the complex, police seized more than $2.6 million in cash, which had been concealed in several compartments throughout the home and in a cavity beneath a religious shrine.
AFP officers also found a cash-counting machine, multiple mobile phones and other items linked to money laundering following an extensive forensic examination of the property.
The woman, who was at one of the units when police arrived was arrested and charged with engaging in conduct in relation to money that was proceeds of a general crime over $1,000,000, contrary to section 400.3(2A) of the Criminal Code 1995 (Cth).
AFP Detective Sergeant Bobby Higgins said the investigation had disrupted the activities of a significant money-laundering organisation that services numerous criminal groups of Sydney’s underbelly. With dedication, the AFP will continue to safeguard the community, ensuring that organised crime does not reap profits at society’s expense.
“During this investigation, we removed more money from the criminal economy in one day than 20 average Australians makes in a year,” Det-Sgt. Higgins said.
“Today’s outcome should serve as a warning to offenders that the AFP is working tirelessly with partners to protect the community and Australia’s legitimate economy.
“We will continue to seize illicit funds to disrupt organised crime syndicates from using those profits to fund other illegal ventures.”