GOLD Coast police have smashed an illegal drug dealing ring operating from an Elanora business after a six-month operation that wrapped up this weekend.
Police estimated that $9 million of cannabis could have been brought across the border from Victoria in the past 12 months for distribution on the coast.
Detective Inspector Tim Trezise said a significant amount of money was located in a "hydroponics shop" in Elanora but there were arrests and raids across the coast including southern Gold Coast.
"There were 38 people charged in the last three days and the numbers of charges were 278 in total," Det Insp Trezise said.
"This syndicate was bringing drugs from interstate and they were doing it on a fairly regular basis. At least once every 14 days as much as 100 pounds (approx 45kg)."
Det Insp Trezise said about 26 search warrants located 158kg cannabis, about 500 ecstasy tablets and other drugs seized.
He said $481,000, firearms and motor vehicles were also seized, including a red Ferrari.
"It's clearly going to disrupt the cannabis trade on the coast because it's a significant amount of drugs that's coming into the coast and being distributed," Det Insp Trezise said.
"We would hope a lot of these people will be now off the street.
"There will be a flow-on effect in relation in property crime and other crimes such as armed robbery in terms of reductions.
"We find when we disrupt these sort of syndicate then there is a flow-on effect."
Det Insp Trezise said during the high-surveillance operation a vehicle was intercepted coming across the border into the Gold Coast on Friday with 45kg of cannabis onboard.