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Anti-drug official caught snorting cocaine

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A customs officer involved in a drug bust last year was caught outside a Sydney nightclub snorting cocaine off a car bonnet, documents have revealed.

The officer resigned after pleading guilty to the offence and receiving a good behaviour bond with no conviction, Fairfax Media has reported based on a freedom of information request.

His arrest followed a bust of 464 kilograms of cocaine allegedly smuggled on a yacht to Brisbane.

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In October 2010, three customs officers celebrated the bust at the Vinyl Nightclub in Gymea, south of Sydney, when the officer was seen by chance snorting one of two five-centimetre lines of cocaine from a car bonnet with a rolled up $5 note, the documents reportedly show.

Plainclothes NSW police officers were three metres away when the customs officer consumed the drug.

Four days earlier, the man played a minor role in the drug bust while stationed at Port Macquarie.

“The officer has had no access to the drugs seized by the AFP during this operation,” a ministerial briefing dated October 25 regarding the officer’s arrest stated.

Another officer who was one of the three outside the Vinyl Rooms has “fled”, Fairfax reported.

The drug bust resulted in an aborted trial after the existence of a video was was denied under oath but found in plain sight on an Australian Federal Police website.

Inconsistencies in the reported amount of seized cocaine were revealed in court.

In a press release Customs reported 464kg of cocaine was seized, but in court the amount reported was 400kg.

A car carrying the accused Simon Charles Golding was searched and customs officers found a bag in the boot, but didn’t search another bag on the back seat, which three days later was found to hold 25kg of cocaine, Fairfax reported.

The car was parked unguarded in the AFP’s Brisbane car park for the three-day period.

A federal police officer said in court the bag incident was “unprofessional”, Fairfax reported.

A new trial for Golding is expected this year, but no date has been set.

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