kayak

The drugs were allegedly found in 19 of the 27 kayaks in the shipment. (ABC News)

Australian police seized about $162 million worth of methamphetamine hidden inside kayaks shipped from China, officials said Wednesday.

Five people were arrested in Sydney on Tuesday after customs officials discovered 183 kilograms of meth last week while inspecting a shipment of kayaks from China, the Australian Federal Police said.

Nineteen of 27 kayaks in the shipment had bags of meth stuffed inside the watertight areas of the boats, said Tim Fitzgerald, regional director for the Australian Customs and Border Protection Service.

Four of the five people arrested are from Taiwan, and one is from Sydney. Two were charged with attempting to import drugs, and the others were charged with possessing a commercial quantity of drugs. They each face a maximum of life in prison if convicted.

Australian officials have made a series of major drug busts in recent months. In October, police seized about AU$200 million worth of meth hidden in the tires of a truck shipped from China.