Over 140 people have been charged and 41 knives seized, during a two-day proactive blitz targeting knife crime and violent offenders across Sydney’s metropolitan regions.
Operation Saber IV, a high-visibility and proactive operation, took place on Thursday (17 December 2020) and Friday (18 December 2020), between 12pm and 12am.
The operation saw a deployment of officers from the South West, North West and Central Metropolitan regions, including Police Transport and Safety Command and the Traffic and Highway Patrol Command, with assistance from specialist police from the Dog Unit and Operation Support Groups (OSG).
During Operation Saber IV, police seized 41 knives, made 78 drug detections, issued 254 Traffic Infringement Notices, 384 Transport Infringement Notices and charged 143 people with offences ranging from possess knife, drug possession and supply to property and domestic-violence related offences.
Additionally, police conducted 44 bail compliance checks.
Incidents of note during the operation include:
- About 4pm on Thursday (17 December 2020), officers stopped and spoke with a man who was smoking on the stairs at Granville Railway Station. Further checks revealed the 35-year-old was wanted for alleged domestic-violence related offences. The man was searched, and police located a glass pipe, methylamphetamine and Valium tablets. He was arrested and taken to Granville Police Station where he was charged with assault occasioning actual bodily harm (DV), two counts of common assault (DV), intentionally choke person without consent (DV) and three counts of contravene prohibition/restriction in AVO (DV). The man was refused bail and appeared before Parramatta Local Court on Friday (18 December 2020), where he was formally refused bail to appear before Campbelltown Local Court on Wednesday 23 December 2020. He was also issued a Field Court Attendance Notice for possess prohibited drug and possess prescribed restricted substance and is due to appear before Parramatta Local Court on Wednesday 20 January 2021.
- A 57-year-old man was arrested following a vehicle stop on Lime Street, Sydney, about 5pm on Thursday. Police seized five bags of cocaine during a search of the vehicle. He was taken to Surry Hills Police Station and charged with two counts of supply prohibited drug. He was granted strict conditional bail to appear before Downing Centre Local Court on Thursday 14 January 2021.
- About 6pm on Thursday, officers attached to Liverpool’s Proactive Crime Team stopped a Subaru on Redfern Road, Minto, for random breath test. The vehicle stopped and the driver, a 35-year-old man, exited the Subaru and walked away from police, before he was arrested. Subsequent checks revealed the man was wanted for alleged child sexual assault offences. He was taken to Campbelltown Police Station and charged with have sexual intercourse with person (aged between 10 and 14 years), conspiracy to dishonestly obtain financial advantage by deception and drive motor vehicle during disqualification period. He was refused bail and appeared before Campbelltown Local Court on Friday (18 December 2020), where he was formally refused bail to reappear before the same court on Wednesday 17 February 2021.
- About 9.30pm on Thursday, officers from Camden Police Area Command stopped a Mazda 323 on Narellan Road, Currans Hill, for a random breath test. The driver, a 29-year-old woman, returned a negative result. Following a search of the vehicle, police seized a folding knife, 59 grams of cocaine, two mobile phones and $1000 cash. The woman was arrested and taken to Narellan Police Station where she was charged with custody of knife in public place. The St Marys woman was granted conditional bail to appear before Picton Local Court on Tuesday 9 February 2021.
- About 11.30pm on Thursday police noticed a 14-year-old girl near Hornsby Railway Station. She was stopped and spoken to by police. The young person was wanted by police for an alleged prior stealing incident. While searchng her handbag police located a knife. She was charged with custody of a knife in a public place, larceny and enter prescribed premises of a person without lawful consent. She was granted conditional bail to appear in a children’s court on Tuesday 2 February 2020.
- About 4pm on Friday (18 December 2020), police stopped a Toyota Echo on Belfield Lane, Belfield, due to its manner of driving. Police spoke with the driver, a 21-year-old man, before searching the vehicle. During the search, police located and seized 174 grams of cannabis, 10 grams of MDMA, $2240 cash, two spring loaded knives, three flick knives and a machete. The driver was arrested and taken to Campsie Police Station where he was charged with possess prohibited drug, supply prohibited drug, deal with property proceeds of crime, two counts of possess prohibited weapon without permit and four counts of custody of knife in public place. The Belmore man was granted conditional bail to appear before Burwood Local Court on Tuesday 2 February 2021.
- About 7.30pm on Friday, police searched a Mercedes on South Liverpool Road, Busby. While searching the boot of the car police allegedly they located a 25cm serrated blade knife. A 56-year-old man was arrested and charged with custody of a knife in a public place. He was granted conditional bail to appear before Liverpool Local Court on Wednesday 20 January 2020.
- About 6pm on Friday, police stopped a vehicle on Bland Street, Woolloomooloo. During a search of the vehicle, police located and seized cocaine, $3700 cash, a tomahawk axe and knife. The driver, a 33-year-old man, was charged with two counts of supply prohibited drug, have custody of an offensive implement in a public place and deal with property proceeds of crime. The Lakemba man was granted conditional bail to appear before Downing Centre Local Court on Tuesday 12 January 2021.
- Officers from the Police Transport Command stopped a 37-year-old man on Drummond Street, Warwick Farm, about 8pm on Friday, after he was allegedly riding a bicycle without a helmet. During a subsequent search of the man’s backpack, police located bolt cutters, gloves, a crowbar, screwdriver and torch. Police will allege the man was unable to provide a reason for having the items. He was arrested and taken to Liverpool Police Station where he was charged with rider not wear approved bicycle helmet, goods in personal custody suspected being stolen, possess means of disguising face with intent to commit indictable offence, possess housebreaking implements and armed with intent to commit indictable offence. He was refused bail and appeared before Parramatta Bail Court yesterday (Saturday 19 December 2020), where he was formally refused bail to appear before Liverpool Local Court tomorrow (Monday 21 December 2020).
Operation Saber IV Commander, Detective Inspector Andrew Evans, said he is very pleased with the results, and more deployments like this can be expected in the new year.
“Operation Saber IV has been an outstanding example of proactive and collaborative police work between all metropolitan regions, which yielded some great outcomes,” Detective Inspector Evans said.
“We will continue to utilise available intelligence to target and disrupt those who think they can cause harm to others in the community, put simply NSW Police won’t tolerate it,”
“Operation Saber deployments this year have taken 97 knives off our streets, made 218 drug seizures and 168 bail compliance checks and seen 330 people put before the courts for a range of offences.
“The safety of the public is always our top priority and we want operations like Saber to reassure the community that they can go about their lives feeling secure, while also sending a message to would-be offenders – if you commit crimes, you will be caught.”
Anyone with information about knife-crime or weapons offences are urged to contact Crime Stoppers: 1800 333 000 or https://nsw.crimestoppers.com.au. Information is treated in strict confidence.