More than 200 Suspects Arrested Across Australia in Crackdown on Organized Crime 

More than 200 people were arrested in Australia Tuesday as part of a major crackdown on an organized crime ring that stretches across several continents.       A joint three-year operation called Operation Ironside conducted by the Australian Federal Police and the U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation involved the monitoring of a once-secret encrypted app called ANOM which was popular with members of organized crime.   Agents uncovered vast information while monitoring the site about the global illicit drug trade across Asia, South America and the Middle East and Australia, as well as 20 plots to commit murder.   Australian officials announced Tuesday in Sydney that 224 people were arrested the day before on a total of 526 charges in each state. More than 4,000 Australian federal, state and local police officers also seized nearly four metric tons of drugs, more than 100 weapons and nearly $35 million in cash during the nationwide raids. Prime Minister Scott Morrison said Operation Ironside delivered “a heavy blow” that will “echo around organized crime around the world.” “This is a watershed moment in Australian law enforcement history,” Morrison said.  In neighboring New Zealand, 35 people were arrested Tuesday as part of Operation Ironside. 

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