More than $80,000 worth of allegedly stolen baby formula, toothpaste, vitamins and other items sought after in China have been discovered by police in raids.
Two men, aged 34 and 33, have been charged over the alleged large-scale theft across the Sydney region between July and November.
Police went into action on Thursday following an investigation overt the alleged syndicate - with raids conducted on three Sydney properties and the arrest of one man at Chester Hill, about 1.50pm.
Two men have been charged following police raids (pictured) on three Sydney properties following and investigation into an alleged theft syndicate
Police found almost 4,000 allegedly stolen items including baby formula in three Sydney properties (pictured)
Police found 273 cans of baby formula, and 317 oral health products, including toothpaste, at the Cabramatta business.
They also found 656 cans of baby formula, 435 oral health products, 216 electric toothbrushes and 752 vitamin bottles at the Fairfield house.
And 587 packets of painkillers, 118 skin products, 447 cans of tuna, several cans of baby formula, manuka honey, confectionary, and tobacco at the Bass Hill business - where the second man was arrested.
The total estimated value of the alleged stolen items is approximately $80,000.
Australian health products are highly sought after in China because of their reputation for quality and safety.
Other items found included cans of tuna, vitamins, and Manuka honey (pictured)
Two men were arrested over the alleged thefts (one is pictured) and were transported to Fairfield Police Station
An enormous industry of so-called Daigou shoppers who buy products not widely available in China and then export them back to the country has sprung up in the the last decade.
Infant formula is particularly in demand, which can be traced back to a 2008 scandal in which formula contaminated with melamine poisoned large numbers of children in China.
The 34-year-old man was transported to Fairfield Police Station and charged with 41 counts of shoplifting, goods in personal custody suspected of being stolen and drive whilst licence expired.
Police also executed an outstanding arrest warrant for the offences of robbery in company, breach of bail, and two counts of fail to appear in accordance with bail acknowledgment.
The man was refused bail and appeared in Fairfield Local Court on Friday.
He was formally refused bail to appear in Parramatta Local Court on Thursday 10 December 2020.
The 33-year-old man, from Bankstown, was charged with deal with property proceeds of crime and goods in personal custody suspected of being stolen.
He was granted conditional bail to appear in Bankstown Local Court on Wednesday 16 December 2020.
The investigation is continuing.
One of the businesses (pictured) where police discovered the goods can be seen packed with items