Cybercrime Squad detectives have charged two men as investigations continue into fraudulent COVID-19 grant applications and drug supply offences on the Central Coast.
In June 2021, detectives from State Crime Command's Cybercrime Squad established Strike Force Orielton to investigate an alleged criminal syndicate involved in fraudulent activity and the supply of prohibited drugs.
During the course of the investigation, detectives uncovered multiple alleged frauds related to NSW government COVID-19 grant schemes.
Following extensive inquiries, strike force detectives executed a search warrant at a home at Mardi from 7am on Tuesday.
During the search, detectives seized nearly 2.4kg of cannabis leaf, as well as documentation and electronic devices, which will undergo further forensic examination.
A 30-year-old man was arrested at the Mardi home, while a second man - aged 39 - was arrested after officers attended a home at Wattanobi a short time later.
Both men were taken to Wyong Police Station, where the younger man was charged with 14 offences, including;
- Dishonestly obtain property by deception (x7),
- supply prohibited drug (x5),
- supply prohibited drugs on an ongoing basis, and,
- deal in identification info and use it to commit fraud.
Police will allege in court the man submitted fraudulent JobSaver and business grant applications and facilitated fraudulent applications on behalf of others.
It will be further alleged the man supplied prohibited drugs including methylamphetamine (ice) and gamma-Hydroxybutyric (GHB) across the Central Coast in September.
He appeared at Wyong Local Court yesterday, where he was formally refused bail.
He will face court again on November 2.
The older man was charged with dishonestly obtain financial advantage by deception and give false information person or property in danger.
Police will allege in court the man falsely claimed he had tested positive for COVID-19, subsequently forcing the closure of multiple businesses on the Central Coast.
He was granted strict conditional bail to appear at Wyong Local Court on November 10.
Investigations under Strike Force Orielton are continuing.
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