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Serious and organised crime

Combating serious and organised crime to protect the physical and financial security of Australia
    About this crime type

    About this crime

    Transnational serious and organised crime (TSOC) threatens Australia's physical and financial security and all people who live and work here. It undermines the country's economic prosperity and social harmony. TSOC costs Australia approximately $60 billion a year.

    TSOC is one of our key focus areas and includes:

    TSOC is complex, operating across integrated global networks. The criminals involved are often well-established and well-financed. It's also often associated with other crimes, such as:

    It is estimated that at least 70% of Australia's serious and organised crime threats are based overseas or have overseas links. Threats against Australia include:

    • outlaw motorcycle gangs and other organised crime syndicates that control a lot of Australia's drug trade
    • money laundering organisations
    • other enablers of the drug trade.

    Special Operation IRONSIDE

    Operation IRONSIDE is a long-term, covert investigation into transnational and serious organised crime allegedly responsible for large drug imports, drug manufacturing and attempts to kill.

    AFP investigators and analysts met with the FBI to hatch an extraordinary plan to snare the big fish of organised crime by introducing their own platform into the criminal market.

    Special Operation IRONSIDE


    Read more about Operation IRONSIDE

    Our work


    Drug crime

    The drug business model is complex. We are the only agency that can take action against all aspects of the drug traffickers’ business model. This includes their operations, logistics, finances and communications. We can also pursue them both in Australia and overseas.

    We work to disrupt the importation and supply of border-controlled drugs and precursors into Australia. We do this through collaboration with our domestic and international partners. We also have an extensive international network, with over 200 AFP officers deployed across more than 30 countries.

    Other serious and organised crime

    We work with an international network of partners to stop transnational serious and organised crime (TSOC) before it reaches Australia.

    We also work on operations with local and international partners to create a hostile environment for crime in Australia. These partnerships allow us to identify, investigate and prosecute related crimes.


    We fight serious and organised crime with a range of specialist capabilities. These include:

    Our overseas-based officers build relationships with our international counterparts to combat crime before it reaches Australia.

    The Criminal Assets Confiscation Taskforce directly targets criminals' wealth and assets. It identifies and removes the profits of crime and restrains criminal assets.

    Our intelligence capabilities include physical and technical surveillance. These provide key insights to allow us to plan actions against crime with maximum impact.

    And our forensics experts maximise our operational impact by providing information on the quality and origins of drugs and chemicals. This helps us to track and disrupt global criminal supply chains.

    Report a crime or concern

    We can investigate Commonwealth crimes (sometimes called federal crimes) and crimes that take place in the Australian Capital Territory. What best describes the crime you want to report or what you want to tell us about?

    How to report

    We want to know if you have information on organised crime networks or activities. Let us know by either:

    If there is immediate danger, call000.

    Join us

    Whether it's working behind the scenes in intelligence or on the front lines responding to threats, plenty of work must be done to combat transnational serious and organised crime (TSOC).

    You'll be a part of one of our biggest operational teams, making a real difference from Australian streets to far-flung parts of the globe.

    If you're driven to uncover information that criminals try to keep hidden, our counter-terrorism investigator role could be for you.

    Or, if you prefer to take the fight to the front line, our tactical response operators are trained to respond to high-risk situations at a moment's notice.

    There are also intelligence officer and analyst roles that provide critical information on emerging and established threats.

    Find out more about these roles:

    You can apply for positions when they are advertised on our Jobs portal.

    Police and PSOs

    Tactical response operator

    Specialist and support

    Examiner or investigator - Forensics

    Specialist and support

    Investigative assistant

    Police and PSOs

    Protective service officer