Some 23 tonnes of cocaine were discovered in containers at the ports of Hamburg and Antwerp, the German customs service announced on Wednesday February 24, hailing the largest seizure ever made in Europe.

Sixteen tons were discovered on February 12 in five containers from Paraguay, customs said. In Hamburg, these containers, considered suspicious, were searched from top to bottom. The drugs were hidden in cans, concealed under a first layer of containers containing putty. In all, 16 tonnes were found in approximately 1,700 boxes.

This first seizure led in the wake of 7.3 other tonnes, stored in the port of Antwerp, Belgium. The total amount of these seizures would thus reach on resale “Several billion euros”, according to customs.

A man arrested

A 28-year-old man has been arrested in the Netherlands. He is suspected of being responsible for the import of these 23 tons of cocaine, according to the customs service.

“Thanks to very professional investigative work, we managed to seize a record quantity of cocaine”, welcomed the German Secretary of State for Customs, Rolf Bösinger, welcoming a “Blow against organized drug crime”. The investigation is continuing in Germany, the Netherlands and Belgium to allow possible further arrests.

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The World with AFP

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