Joint Statement

Joint Transnational Serious Organised Crime Taskforce operation leads to twenty-year sentence after cocaine seized in Fiji A joint Transnational Serious Organised Crime Taskforce investigation led by Fiji Police led to a twenty-year sentence for a Canadian national in Fiji who was found in possession of 39.5 kilograms of Cocaine in 2019.

Fiji's Commissioner of Police Brigadier General Sitiveni Qiliho has commended the efforts of all law enforcement stakeholders for the successful prosecution.

"Collaboration and cooperation is key to the success of any transnational operation and reinforces our collective commitment in protecting the region from the devastating impacts of the illicit drug trade", says Police Brigadier General Sitiveni Qiliho.

"The news of the successful prosecution will also act as a major deterrent, as our joint efforts have once again proven that we have a solid enforcement cooperation network with the ability to disrupt and destabilize international criminal networks”, says Police Brigadier General Sitiveni Qiliho.

The case had links to Operation Nova, a significant New Zealand Police, National Organised Crime Group, investigation targeting the supply of methamphetamine and cocaine in New Zealand.

Operation Nova established connections between members of an organised crime group operating in New Zealand with Fiji, allowing information to be passed to Fiji police who initiated their investigation.

Detective Inspector Paul Newman, National Organised Crime, says this result reflects the hard work of the Fiji Police investigators.

"This investigation highlights the importance of countries working together to disrupt the supply of illicit drugs", says Detective Inspector Paul Newman.

The Transnational Serious Organised Crime Taskforce, made up of several Pacific police services, enabled Australian Federal Police and New Zealand Police to work alongside Fiji Police to support some aspects of their investigation.

The sentencing of Mr Rahman demonstrates the commitment of Taskforce members to collaborate and successfully disrupt organised crime, hold those who engage in illegal activity to account and prevent harm to our communities.

AFP Commander Melinda Phelan said the AFP worked closely with international law enforcement partners to prevent the harm caused by illicit drugs reaching the streets in Australia and neighbouring countries.

“This operation highlights the benefits of a joint-agency approach to tackling the scourge of transnational and serious organised crime across the Pacific, ultimately stopping these drugs from impacting the most vulnerable members of our respective communities,” Commander Phelan said.