20 kg of cannabis seized in Australia's New South Wales drug blitz
Published: Jun 29, 2012 01:11 PM Updated: Jun 29, 2012 01:33 PM
Eighteen people have been arrested and over 20 kilograms of cannabis leaf seized during simultaneous raids across Australia's New South Wales (NSW), the state police said on Friday.

Almost 150 police officers executed 18 search warrants in nine local area commands including Cabramatta, Campsie, Bondi, North Sydney, Tuggerah Lakes, Central Hunter, Forster and Tamworth at 7 a.m. (local time) on Friday.

Eighteen people arrested during the blitz are assisting officers with their inquiries, NSW Police said.

Officers also seized 70,000 AU dollars (70,994 US dollars) in cash in Friday's raids.

Police expect to lay more than 150 charges against the 18 people arrested, in relation to the large commercial production and supply of drugs and knowingly taking part in a criminal group.

The blitz was part of an ongoing operation by Strike Force Whitmont, which was formed in March to investigate the large-scale supply of cannabis across several metropolitan and regional areas in NSW, police said.

The strike force has so far seized about 40 kilograms of cannabis leaf with a potential street value of 260,000 AU dollars (263,692 US dollars).