Millions of dollars worth of high-quality cocaine washed up on Australian beaches after drug smuggling allegedly involving an Olympus star goes terribly wrong
- Olympic kayaker Nathan Baggaley has been accused of smuggling $ 176 million worth of cocaine
- Baggaley and brother Dru are said to have tried smuggling in July 2018
- Dru and another man reportedly received cocaine from South Americans at sea
- They were arrested by police after Dru reportedly threw 652 kg of drugs into the sea
An Olympic legend was part of a botched drug-trafficking attempt that resulted in tens of millions of dollars in cocaine washed up on beaches off Australia’s east coast, police say.
Olympic double silver medalist Nathan Baggaley, 44, has been accused of working with an international drug syndicate to bring $ 176 million worth of cocaine to Australia in July 2018.
Court documents state that Baggaley’s brother Dru was also reportedly involved in the plan, along with skipper Anthony Trevor Draper, 53.
Police claim that Dru and Draper met about 20 armed South Americans at sea to exchange cocaine.
The men are said to have thrown packages of cocaine into the ocean, while Dru and Draper fished them out and transferred them to an inflatable boat.
While the duo were on their way to the coast, the water police intercepted them off Byron Bay, court documents seen through The Sunday Mail revealed.
Dru would have been dumped 652 kg of cocaine overboard. While the Navy managed to get hold of some packages, dozens more washed ashore on East Coast beaches in the seven months that followed.
Olympic silver medalist, Nathan Baggaley, 44, is accused of working for an international cocaine syndicate to smuggle $ 176 million worth of cocaine to Australia in July 2018
Millions of dollars have since been found on the coast in beaches in NSW and Queensland
Nine packages worth $ 18.5 million were found by residents of Curtis Island in Queensland to Port Kembla, south of Sydney, while tourists on Fraser Island found another $ 5.2 million package.
Kayakers found $ 7 million in NSW’s South West Rocks, and $ 289,000 was found by beachgoers in Bargara, Queensland.
A Queensland mother and son found another package in Elliot Heads in December 2018, which according to court documents, was crucial in linking the washed-up packages to those seized by the Navy.
Police claim the packages were almost identical to the 76 percent pure cocaine in the ocean.
Dru was eventually caught because police officers had video footage of him handling the drugs on a 55-meter-long red ‘mother ship’ in international waters.
Nathan’s brother Dru reportedly threw 652 kg of cocaine overboard during failed drug trafficking
Police arrested the men before they could successfully smuggle the drugs
Police say Dru and Draper spent an hour loading the cocaine onto the inflatable boat, which they said was bought for Baggaley for $ 106,700.
The Olympian also called the boat “Medellin” – Colombia’s cocaine capital – and covered the license plates, police say.
Agents claim that Baggaley waited for his brother and Draper to return to a boat ramp in Brunswick Heads, NSW.
He had not yet realized that they had been arrested by the water police while racing to the coast.
Court documents reveal that Baggaley had also tried calling the boat’s satellite phone under a false name.
It took a year before Baggaley was accused of supporting or stimulating imports of a commercial quantity of a border-controlled drug.
Baggaley was denied bail and will appear in court on Thursday. He could get a maximum life sentence in prison because of the charges.
Dru will go to trial next month.