Three men will remain behind bars after being charged over the biggest haul of the drug ice in Australian history.

Sydney police say a five month investigation resulted in the seizure of the drugs, with an estimated street value of $438 million.

More than half-a-tonne was found after officers received an anonymous phone call and raided six properties in February.

Detectives arrested IT student Tony Ming Ly, 21, who they say hired a van to transport the drugs the day before his arrest.

They also arrested 32-year-old Boon Cheng Leow and 51-year-old Cheung Tuen.

Tuen was the only man to appear in Central Local Court today.

He was told through an interpreter that a large amount of evidence still needs to be examined, including photos and audio from listening devices.

Bail was formally refused for all three men, and the case was adjourned until July.