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Bizarre apology by James Blee accused of involvement in $20million cocaine syndicate Newcastle

The Australian superyacht businessman arrested after a diver died recovering $20 million worth of cocaine laughed with reporters about being snubbed from the Survivor show as he issued a bizarre apology.

Handcuffed James ‘Jimmy’ Blake Blee, 62, spoke to reporters as he was extradited to New South Wales on a flight from Cairns airport on Friday afternoon.

Blee was prevented from leaving the country on board a flight from Cairns to Singapore on Wednesday, two days after the alleged drug smuggling operation went tragically wrong.

The police will allege that he had a one-way ticket and was carrying US$17,000 in cash and another A$12,000.

The diver was found floating in Newcastle Harbor by port workers at 9:30am on Monday, surrounded by yellow packages containing 54kg of cocaine.

Australian superyacht businessman James Blee arrested after a diver died recovering $20 million worth of cocaine has issued a cryptic apology

Australian superyacht businessman James Blee arrested after a diver died recovering $20 million worth of cocaine has issued a cryptic apology

Blee, who has been accused of importing large commercial quantities of a border-controlled drug and a large commercial supply of drugs, told reporters that

Blee, who has been accused of importing large commercial quantities of a border-controlled drug and a large commercial supply of drugs, told reporters he was “sorry about the situation I find myself in.”

Blee, who has been accused of importing large commercial quantities of a border-controlled drug and a large commercial supply of drugs, told reporters he was “sorry about the situation I find myself in.”

“I’d like to apologize to my friends and family for the overall situation I’ve put them in right now,” Blee said.

‘The judicial process will show the final result and what is going to happen, but the fact that it has reached this stage, I am very sorry.

“These are very serious charges and I am looking forward to the opportunity to appear in court in New South Wales to clear my name.”

Strangely, Blee was also seen laughing when he told a Channel 7 reporter that he had “tried three times to get into Survivor”, but assumed he was rejected due to his age.

Police will allege that Blee was behind a large-scale cocaine import operation and that he was seen in the company of the deceased diver.

The dying diver was found floating in Newcastle Harbor by port workers at 9:30am on Monday, surrounded by yellow packages containing 54kg of cocaine.

The dying diver was found floating in Newcastle Harbor by port workers at 9:30am on Monday, surrounded by yellow packages containing 54kg of cocaine.

How the diving tragedy unfolded and drug theft revealed.  Blee allegedly tried to flee Australia

How the diving tragedy unfolded and drug theft revealed. Blee allegedly tried to flee Australia

They alleged that he was “purchasing sophisticated diving equipment such as was found on the diver” before the tragic incident in Newcastle. me.

Blee, who was carrying thousands of Australian and US dollars when police stopped him, was escorted on Friday by four New South Wales detectives and two Queensland police officers.

Police prosecutor Sophie Gorrick told Cairns Magistrates Court on Friday that Blee was arrested while trying to board a plane to Singapore at around 5:30pm on May 11 by Australian Federal Police and Queensland Police.

The man is described as being of South American appearance, about 178 cm tall and with an athletic build.

The woman is described as slim, about 150-160 cm tall, with a tanned complexion with blond/gray hair.

Detectives believe a man and woman seen in the CCTV footage may help with investigations into the case which also involved a diver who died trying to retrieve 54kg of cocaine from the hull of a ship in Newcastle.

“When he was arrested at Cairns airport, he was found to be carrying 12,100 Australian dollars, 17,608 US dollars, 90 Singapore dollars and 300 rupees,” Gorrick told the court. Cairns Post reported

He added that a search of his home uncovered “larger” amounts, including some hidden in his children’s bedrooms.

Blee’s lawyer argued that he should be granted bail as he was a “respected” member of the community and still had family living in Cairns.

Cairns Magistrate Jacqui Payne denied bail.

Blee is due to appear in court in Parramatta on Saturday.

The 62-year-old claimed to have piloted “luxury charter yachts for the world’s rich and famous” and boasted of “starting out in the film and television business”, in which he claimed to be a producer.

Detectives want to talk to the blonde or gray-haired woman and an olive-skinned South American man seen on camera.

Detectives want to talk to the blonde or gray-haired woman and an olive-skinned South American man seen on camera.

He recently founded North Queensland Superyacht Marine and Tours.

Earlier on Friday, detectives said they believe a man and woman seen in CCTV footage may be able to help with inquiries related to the case.

They released security footage footage showing a woman wearing glasses and a man dressed casually.

Detectives investigating the case want to speak to a woman with blonde highlights carrying a green bag and a man believed to be of South American descent.

They were seen on CCTV shortly after the dead diver and the huge cocaine shipment were seized at 9:30am Monday.

“As investigations continue into the circumstances surrounding the death of the diver, who has not yet been formally identified, detectives believe the man and woman can assist with the investigations,” a police spokesman said.

The man is described as being of South American appearance, about 178 cm tall and with an athletic build.

“The woman is described as having a slim build, about 150-160cm tall and has a tan complexion with blonde/grey hair.”

Detective Superintendent Robert Critchlow said the couple may have been in Newcastle between May 1 and 11 and warned that the man is suspected of being dangerous.

He claimed that both entered the country illegally through a boat.

Detectives launched an interstate task force, spanning New South Wales, Queensland and the Northern Territory, after the botched drug smuggling operation.

A diver, wearing sophisticated breathing equipment that disguised his movements and hid any telltale traces of bubbles from his scuba gear, was found dying in the water.

He had been trying to retrieve a $20 million drug haul hidden in the hull of a ship and was found surrounded by large floating blocks of cocaine wrapped in yellow plastic.

Police dive teams found a further 54kg of the drug in the underwater chest inside the hull of the Argentine cargo ship that had arrived in Newcastle on Sunday night.

Detectives now suspect it may be linked to a similar ‘spectacular’ cocaine discovery found floating in the ocean off Indonesia over the weekend.

Police are investigating to see if there is a connection between the two after 179kg of the drug was discovered in the water near Java’s Merak port on Sunday.

The Indonesian loot, valued at $80 million, was found in four blocks of black plastic, floating in the ocean off the docks.

“This is a spectacular seizure of cocaine considering its enormous value and the impact on people as a result of illicit drugs,” said Indonesian Navy Vice Admiral Ahmadi Heri Purwono.

Police prevented superyacht boss James Blee, 62, from leaving the country on board a flight from Cairns to Singapore on Wednesday.

Police prevented superyacht boss James Blee, 62, from leaving the country on board a flight from Cairns to Singapore on Wednesday.

No one has been arrested in connection with the discovery and local investigations are continuing, but Australian police are understood to have been in contact with their Indonesian counterparts.

“The logistics of this operation were huge with a lot of moving parts and we are also looking at Indonesia and what could have happened there,” added Det Superpt Critchlow.

NSW detectives suspect that 300kg was originally hidden in the hull of the Argentine cargo ship that docked in Newcastle.

They believe 46kg was successfully removed in Australia before the drug mule diver’s tragic death, leaving 200kg still to be accounted for.

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