Ex-Liberal leader's son charged in dark web drug supply
The son of former NSW Liberal Party leader Kerry Chikarovski has been charged over allegedly supplying drugs on the dark web under the username 'AusCokeKing' in exchange for cryptocurrency.
Mark Chikarovski, 37, was arrested at an apartment complex in Bondi Junction in Sydney's east on Thursday.
Detective Superintendent Matthew Craft said Chikarovski was shocked when police arrived at his home, with officers claiming he was wearing gloves and packaging illicit drugs ready to post at the time of his arrest.
"We don't believe that he was even aware that law enforcement had an interest in his activities at the time," Det Supt Craft said on Friday.
"He was packaging, illicit drugs ready to post ...
"He was taking precautions, he was wearing gloves at the time he was actually arrested."
Chikarovski was later charged with 31 offences including supplying prohibited drugs on an ongoing basis, knowingly dealing with proceeds of crime and 16 counts of supplying a prohibited drug (indictable and commercial quantity).
He appeared at Waverley Local Court on Friday where he was granted bail on the condition he reports daily to police, abides by a curfew, surrenders his passport and does not use electronic devices.
A $500,000 surety was put forward for Chikarovski's release, according to multiple media reports.
Chikarovski's mother led the NSW Liberal Party from 1999 to 2002 as the state's first female opposition leader.
She has since founded her own consultancy firm Chikarovski & Associates.
Police allege the 37-year-old received cryptocurrency in exchange for prohibited drugs on thousands of occasions since 2017.
Detectives began an investigation in January probing the supply of prohibited drugs across NSW using dark web marketplaces.
"During the course of the investigation, detectives identified a marketplace facilitating the supply of cocaine, methylamphetamine and MDMA in exchange for cryptocurrency," NSW Police said in a statement.
Officers carried out search warrants at a Bondi Junction apartment as well as a house in Vaucluse about 1.30pm on Thursday.
"Investigators located prohibited drugs, computers, $30,000 cash, approximately $269,000 worth of varying cryptocurrency and two Porsche SUVs," police said.
Det Supt Craft said a large quantity of cocaine, MDMA and methamphetamine were all located at the property as well as restricted prescription substances.
These items were seized to undergo forensic examination.
Chikarovski will next appear in court on July 13.