Germany and Belgium have seized 23 tonnes of cocaine in a document haul of the drug in Europe, German customs stated Wednesday.
“The enormous amount of cocaine would have brought in several billion euros (dollars) in street sales,” the customs workplace stated in a press release.
German officers had found 16 tonnes of cocaine hidden in containers from Paraguay on the port of Hamburg on February 12.
Joint investigations into the stash with Dutch officers led authorities to swoop on one other 7.2 tonnes in cocaine on the port of Antwerp in Belgium, German customs stated.
Dutch police stated they arrested a 28-year-old man early Wednesday within the Netherlands in reference to each hauls totalling 23 tonnes.
Investigators additionally searched two premises — one in Rotterdam and one other in a close-by village.
Dutch police stated the illicit cargo intercepted was all sure for “the same destination in the Netherlands”.
“The seized mega shipments to the Netherlands together form an absolute record. Never before has so much cocaine been intercepted at once,” they stated in a press release.
Customs officers on the busy port in Hamburg had determined to take a more in-depth have a look at the Paraguayan containers after noticing “clear irregularities” with its contents — tin cans that have been meant to be stuffed with putty.
“Beyond a layer of genuine goods packed just behind the container door, numerous tin cans were in fact filled with other goods,” stated customs.
Investigators ordered the containers unloaded, and located the cocaine stash in over 1,700 tin cans.
“This is the largest amount of cocaine ever seized in Europe and one of the largest single seizures worldwide,” German customs stated, referring to the Hamburg haul.
In all, 102 tonnes of cocaine headed for the European continent have been intercepted final yr by a global legislation enforcement challenge co-implemented by the UN.
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