Accused Bondi cocaine dealer – slapped down for her entitled attitude when arrested fronts court

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Two women who complained about being arrested during their night of alleged drug dealing, and a father are the latest to face court over a Sydney dial-a-dealer scheme.

Feda Merhi, 30, and Laila Elali, 26, were pulled over by police on a Saturday night last month as they allegedly prepared to supply cocaine throughout the Bondi party hub.

As Elali was led away by police she told an officer: ‘I really don’t appreciate this’. 

The policeman then shut her down by responding: ‘Well, you shouldn’t be involved in drug supply then should you?’ 

The two women were among 55 people – ranging from kingpins to small-time buyers – charged during a three-week anti-drug sting by NSW Police Strike Force Northrop.

 

Over three weekends in May plain clothed officers carried out arrests on suspected drug suppliers in the eastern Sydney suburbs of Coogee, Bondi and Paddington. 

Elali and Merhi were both due to face Waverley Local Court on Tuesday, but with Elali going on holiday to Lebanon since her arrest, her co-accused was left to face court alone.

Appearing in court a few hours after Merhi was John Tannous, 38, who was arrested in a separate stop by the Strike Force Northrop a day before.

Tannous was riding alongside Mustafa Timothy Genc, 35, on the night of Friday, May 10, when the flashing red and blue lights appeared behind their Toyota Aurion.

The men were driving on Ocean Street in North Bondi, allegedly preparing to deliver  MDMA and cocaine to customers for the busy weekend when they were pulled over.

During a search of their car police allegedly found $800 in cash, 31 grams of cocaine and 11 grams of MDMA, as well as a number of mobile phones. 

As police searched the vehicle, Tannous sat in the gutter smoking a cigarette with a hood over his head and a defeated look on his face.

Tannous again lit up a smoke outside court on Tuesday, where he faced two charges of supplying cocaine and one count each of supplying MDMA and dealing with the proceeds of crime.

Genc is also facing the same four charges.

Hours before Elali and Merhi were pulled over, fellow alleged dial-a-dealer Vanessa Galati was stopped as she drove her BMW through another eastern Sydney suburb.

Galati, 29, sat handcuffed in the gutter on Glenmore Road after being arrested just before 5pm on Saturday, May 11.

Inside her luxury car officers allegedly uncovered 17 grams of cocaine and $4200 in cash.

Just hours after Galati’s arrest, a teenage tradie was allegedly caught driving through Bondi with 15 grams of cocaine and $1990 in his car.

Riad Bassal, 19, was driving a blue Holden through the intersection of Castlefield Rd and Bondi Rd when he was pulled over by officers from the strike force.

Inside the car they allegedly found bags of cocaine hidden in a pair of sports socks. 

The next weekend police were out on the streets again, this time arresting a Coogee chiropractor who they will allege worked a weekend job supplying drugs in the area.

Dr Jesse Thurlow, 28, was also stopped while driving in Bondi on a Saturday night.

Dr Thurlow – who while working as a chiropractor counted high-profile stars such as Tim Robards among his clientele – was charged with supplying MDMA, possessing cocaine and also dealing with the proceeds of crime.

Over the three weekends police seized 290 grams of cocaine, 13 grams of MDMA, 110 grams of cannabis and $63,000 in cash.

A total of 28 people were charged with drug supply, and 27 with drug possession. 

The Strike Force Northrop operation was initiated by NSW Police to investigate the ongoing supply of drugs to Sydney’s eastern suburbs.

Police allege many of those arrested drove in from the city’s west, delivered drugs to their clients and then drove home again. 

‘Strike Force Northrop detectives will continue to investigate and target those in the community that continue to participate in illegal drug-related activity,’ Detective Chief Inspector Stuart Bell said.

‘These illicit substances are incredibly dangerous, and we will do everything we can to remove them from the streets of Sydney.

‘Police do not want to see any more drug-related deaths and it is disappointing to see so many people putting other’s lives at risk through the sale and distribution of these drugs.

‘If anyone in the community has information about the supply of prohibited drugs, please contact Crime Stoppers immediately.’ 

 

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