Six men have been arrested after NSW police seized $50 million of cocaine and dismantled a sophisticated crime network involved in the supply of drugs across the globe.

NSW Police said earlier this year a joint operation involving Australian and British authorities began investigating a criminal syndicate suspected to be importing prohibited drugs.

They uncovered an airfreight consignment with 125kg of cocaine concealed inside the base of an industrial generator.

Detective Superintendent Robert Critchlow said three men were arrested in NSW while another three were apprehended in the UK on Tuesday.

“This was clearly a highly co-ordinated syndicate who have gone to extreme efforts both here and in Europe to ensure their shipment of drugs arrived uninhibited,” he said on Wednesday.

“Our intelligence sharing capabilities both here and overseas has resulted in the complete devastation of this criminal enterprise – and the prospect of a lengthy prison term for each of those involved.”

Organised Crime Squad detectives raided a property at Cawdor in Sydney’s southwest on Tuesday afternoon.

During the operation a Mercedes van and Pantech truck left the property and police say the truck driver rammed several police cars before both vehicles were stopped.

The driver and passenger of the truck – two men aged 29 and 32 – as well as the driver of the van, a 29-year-old man, were all arrested and charged with importing a commercial quantity of a border-controlled drug, supplying a commercial quantity of a prohibited drug, participating in a criminal group and contributing to criminal activity.

The 29 and 32-year-old men were refused bail to appear at Fairfield Local Court on Wednesday.

The second 29-year-old man was refused bail to appear at Liverpool Local Court.

About the same time, officers attached to the UK National Crime Agency executed a number of warrants in Britain and arrested three men.

They are being held on suspicion of conspiracy to export a controlled drug and are being questioned by officers.