Police across the region are gearing up for more arrests in connection with the massive Hong Kong- financed drugs syndicate smashed in Fiji on Wednesday, investigators said yesterday. So far 14 people linked with the $4.38 billion crystal methamphetamine operation have been arrested in Fiji, Hong Kong and Malaysia, including seven Hong Kong citizens. Tony O'Connor, the Australian who heads Fiji's customs service, said the drug-making operation was the biggest of its kind discovered in the southern hemisphere, with far-reaching tentacles. 'There are links with transnational crime syndicates in other countries,' he said. 'There will be more arrests in the next 24 to 48 hours.' Mr O'Connor declined to say where the arrests would be made. He revealed that several Hong Kong members of the syndicate may have slipped the net when more than 60 police from Fiji, Australia and New Zealand raided homes and a factory in the Fijian capital, Suva. 'There may be some who were lucky,' he said. The factory could churn out 1,000kg of ice in two weeks. The raids were the culmination of a 14-month operation in which Fijian investigators collaborated with Hong Kong authorities through the Australian Federal Police. Fijian customs and police officers spent yesterday questioning four detained Hong Kong citizens, who are believed to have been living in Suva for some months. Under Fijian law they must be charged within 48 hours of being arrested and are likely to appear in court today. The group is believed to have had links with local ethnic Chinese businessmen, including one who allegedly rented the warehouse in which the methamphetamine, the popular party drug known as 'Ice', was being produced. The drugs were destined for Australia, New Zealand, the US and Europe. Further arrests in Fiji were possible, Mr O'Connor said.