BY IAN CROUCH

A Newcastle man is facing a life sentence over his alleged involvement in an international drug smuggling syndicate.

Chinese officials alerted Australian Federal Police to suspicious packages destined for our shores.

254 blocks of heroin weighing 74 kilograms were found in vacuum sealed foil bags – they were replaced with an inert substance before 4 consignments were sent to their intended addresses in Australia – Three in Newcastle and one in Western Australia.

Officers then executed search warrants at Jesmond, Belmont, Lambton and The Hill, allegedly seizing a small amount of drugs and cash, drug paraphernalia and a mobile phone .

A 23-year-old man was arrested at The Hill – he’s been charged with with attempting to possess a commercial quantity of border controlled drugs.

He faced Newcastle Local Court on April 23 and has been refused bail to face court again next month.

Some of the Heroin seized by AFP officers Picture: AFP