Credit: Dado Galdieri/Bloomberg via Getty Images On December 19, 2016, during a routine inspection of a foreign shipping container, customs officials in Melbourne noticed a suspicious blip on their x-ray scanner. The container had arrived from South Africa carrying industrial mining equipment and an “anomaly” inside one of the machines — an iron-ore extractor — led to a physical inspection. Concealed within the extractor, inside a seven-inch-thick metal crate lined with charcoal, were 358 one-kilogram packages of cocaine and methamphetamine, a $138 million haul. Australian police later deemed it one of the largest drug seizures of that year and praised Australia’s border security, emphasizing its powerful x-ray screening technology. “Our officers have the expertise and technology to detect even the most sophisticated concealment,” said a regional commander. What officials did not highlight was the company behind the impressive gadgetry: Nuctech, the Chinese state-owned firm that had been banned from U.Subscribe or login to read the rest. Subscribers get full access to: Exclusive longform investigative journalism, Q&As, news and analysis, and data on Chinese business elites and corporations. We publish China scoops you won't find anywhere else. A weekly curated reading list on China from David Barboza, Pulitzer Prize-winning former Shanghai correspondent for The New York Times. A daily roundup of China finance, business and economics headlines. We offer discounts for groups, institutions and students. Go to our Subscriptions page for details.