NSW Premier Barry O’Farrell has applauded today’s announcement from the Australian Government to boost funding to Customs by $88 million, as a move which will help stop the flow of illegal weapons and drugs onto the streets of NSW.
“This is a very welcome announcement from Tony Abbott and Scott Morrison,” Mr O’Farrell said.
“This boost to funding and increase in Customs inspections will assist the NSW Police Force in the fight against illegal weapons and drugs,” he said.
“The move also complements my Government’s efforts to fight drug and alcohol-fuelled violence, which includes increasing the maximum sentence for the illegal supply and possession of steroids to 25 years – up from two years.
“I have been a strong critic of Labor’s cuts to Customs which saw inspection levels plunge and illegal weapons and drugs flow onto Sydney streets into the hands of criminal gangs.
“When the Howard Government left office, 60 per cent of air cargo was inspected by authorities. Under Labor, it fell to just 10 per cent. The inspections of sea cargo also fell.
“Thankfully we now have an Australian Government in charge that is serious about border protection and committed to improving Customs inspections,” Mr O’Farrell said.