Police crack 'one of the biggest' alleged cocaine rings

Six people were arrested in the covert midnight operation, including four Australian nationals, one New Zealander and a Swiss national.

The result of the operation was "a testament to the officers' drive and determination", AFP acting deputy commissioner operations Neil Gaughan said.

Three men, aged 63, 62 and 66, were arrested on the NSW south coast, while a 32-year-old man was arrested in Sydney.

The operation is the result of a two-and-a-half year joint investigation by Australian and New Zealand authorities.

He confirmed the bust was the largest drug haul in New Zealand history and praised the New Zealand Customs officers who worked on the operation for their "really tenacious thorough work".

"Our officers based in Brisbane have been doggedly pursuing this matter since 2014". Police believe they were planning on meeting the yacht at sea before returning to Australia with the drugs.

Australian Federal Police (AFP) officers have charged six people over a big cocaine haul discovered when authorities intercepted a yacht off the New South Wales coast.

During the last 18 months, more than 11 tons of drugs have been blocked from entering Australia, according to official said.

Chief of Operations Maritime Border Command, Air Commodore Jake Campbell, said the successful outcome of the operation showcases the sophisticated work of the MBC, Australia's leading civil maritime security authority.

They said the boat, called the Elakha, travelled from New Zealand to collect the drugs from a "mothership" in the South Pacific ocean in January.

  • Eleanor Harrison