10 Rocket Launchers Stolen Over A Decade Ago Are Still MIA

2 min read

That’s a lot of rocket launchers… 

What would you say if we told you there was not one, but TEN army-grade rocket launchers floatin’ around somewhere in Australia?

Yes, like these rocket launchers:

No, we’re not joking. 

The rocket launchers have been missing since the early ‘00s, and until now, you probably had no idea.  

We had no idea either. Until we listened to Police Tape, Merrick Watt’s new true crime podcast. 

The rocket launchers were stolen from an Australian military facility in 2002 by former army captain Shane Della-Vedova. 

Della-Vedova then sold the rocket launchers to a notorious family of criminals, the Darwiche family clan. They’ve been missing ever since.

The weirdest part is this actually isn’t a unique incident. There have been a whopping 34 cases of military ‘hardware’ being lost, found or stolen between 2015 and 2017 alone. 

We know what you’re thinking; how hard could it be to locate ten rocket launchers?

They’re big, they’re scary-looking, and they’d stick out like a sore thumb on eBay. 

The search has been on for some time and involved, at different times, up to 30 officers from ASIO, the Australian Federal Police and NSW Police. 

Various parks around Sydney were even excavated in the search of the rockets. 

A lot of effort, we gotta say. 

In his podcast, Merrick Watts chatted to former NSW Assistant Police Commissioner Ken “Slasher” McKay - who worked the case back in ‘00s - and revealed a bunch of super-interesting BTS goss:

“Like many people, I’d heard rumours, but was pretty astonished hearing that there were potentially that many [rocket launchers] on the streets unaccounted for,” Merrick explains on the podcast.

Despite only retrieving ONE of the rocket launchers (leaving ten still MIA), Ken is pretty chill. He’s not fussed, relaxed even. 

We don’t know whether we should be concerned or impressed by his chill level. 

Luckily for us (but not others), it is believed the rocket launchers are no longer in the country. 

They have apparently been sold. Probably (not) on eBay. 

Police Tape is available to stream on Acast, or wherever you listen to podcasts.


Written By Brynn Davies

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