Man Arrested After Suspicious Packages Sent To Consulates Throughout Australia

Greek vice-consul Georgia Botsiou told SBS Greek radio it had received the package on Friday afternoon.

The Australian Federal Police have confirmed the man was arrested at his home in northern Victoria on Wednesday night and charged with sending unsafe articles to be carried by a postal service.

The Australian Federal Police said that 29 packages were being examined, and that the incidents were under investigation.

He was due to appear in Melbourne Magistrates Court later on Thursday.

The British consulate in Melbourne was one of 38 to be sent parcels, with officers continuing to test them to determine what substance they contain.

Australian police have arrested a man who allegedly sent suspicious parcels to consulates and embassies in Canberra, Melbourne and Sydney.

"Forensic police have spent a large part of today raiding his Shepparton home".

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The Indian and USA consulates on St Kilda Road, along with the British, Swiss, German Korean, Greek, Italian, Pakistani and Egyptian missions were targeted.

There has been no evidence yet that the packages were unsafe, but police Thursday said forensic testing was continuing to determine their exact contents.

The packages were sent two days after an envelope containing powder was sent to the Argentinian consulate in Sydney.

Police said they have identified all the intended recipients and have put procedures in place to recover the outstanding packages. They gave no additional details of how the asbestos was packaged or what the motive might have been.

There was no ongoing threat to the public, authorities said. The maximum penalty for the crime is 10 years in jail.

India, New Zealand, Pakistan, South Korea, Switzerland and the United States consulates were among a number across Melbourne and Canberra targeted with suspicious packages on Wednesday, sparking an emergency "hazardous material" response and some evacuations.

Australia's Department of Foreign Affairs had raised the alarm with all diplomatic missions in Canberra on Tuesday after similar incidents were reported at offices in Sydney and the Australian Capital Territory.

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