February 8, 2023

Police have reportedly discovered a hidden drug lab in a unit at Melbourne’s former COVID-19 quarantine center following a tip off from staff working at the $580 million facility.

Officers attended the Center for National Resilience in Mickleham, in Melbourne’s northern suburbs, at around 4:30pm on Tuesday, after workers alerted the force to possible criminal activity at a unit.

Units at the Mickleham quarantine centre.Credit:Paul Jeffers

Police came across drug-making paraphernalia, according to Seven News.

A Victoria Police spokesperson confirmed that officers were called to the Mickleham facility on Tuesday and discovered a number of suspicious items inside a unit. Those items are now part of an ongoing investigation.

A Victorian government spokeswoman said staff at the facility, which is currently used to house flood victims, were the first to raise the alarm.

“As this is now under police investigation, it would be inappropriate to comment (further),” he said.

Mickleham was used for quarantine purposes for eight months last year.

The center, which has 1,000 beds and is equipped with more than 500 CCTV cameras for contact tracing, housed more than 2,000 people between its opening as a quarantine center in February and its closure in October.

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