Cocaine worth £1.3m seized from vessel at Portsmouth International Port

Cocaine worth £1.3m on the streets has been intercepted at Portsmouth’s port.

Wednesday, 9th October 2019, 4:19 pm
Cocaine worth 1.3m on the streets was found in a cargo vessel at Portsmouth Interational Port on October 4. Picture: National Crime Agency

Border Force officers found 20 packages hidden behind a panel in a container onboard a cargo vessel on Friday.

The vessel had a number of containers from Ecuador, Panama and Colombia.

In all the cocaine weighed 22kg (48lbs) and is now the subject of a National Crime Agency investigation.

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There have been no arrests.

Border Force assistant director Ben Youlden said: ‘This was a sophisticated concealment of a large amount of illegal drugs. In making the seizure we have kept the drugs off the streets where they can do so much damage and out of the hands of those who seek to profit from the trade.

‘My officers do excellent work at ports across the UK to secure our borders and work closely with other law enforcement agencies, like the NCA, to prevent drug trafficking.’

The haul came after the NCA and Border Force launched a joint operation.

Back in December 2014 about 300kg (661lbs) of the class A drug was found following on a cargo vessel at the port.

Two men were jailed for 15 and 16 years for bringing in 52kg (114lbs) cocaine with a street value of between £4.8m and £10.4m via the port in 2013.