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Canary Islands: Spanish police seize 4.5 tons of cocaine

2023-01-28T22:10:14.201Z


The Spanish police seized 4.5 tons of cocaine in the port of Gran Canaria. The drugs came from a ship that had been under surveillance for more than two years.


Enlarge image

Police officers take photos with the drugs seized from the livestock transport ship "Orion V"

Photo: BORJA SUAREZ / REUTERS

The Spanish police confiscated 4.5 tons of cocaine on board a ship off the Canary Islands on Saturday.

The drugs were found in a container on the Togolese-flagged livestock ship Orion V, police said.

28 crew members from a total of nine countries were arrested.

The ship was en route from Latin America to the Middle East.

Authorities had been watching the Orion V for more than two years.

The ship had previously been "controlled and searched," but despite sufficient evidence of drugs on board, there were no finds, police said.

That changed with the operation on Tuesday, in which the US Anti-Drugs Agency (DEA), the Togolese authorities and the Spanish police were involved, among others.

The container in which the drugs were found had been used to feed cattle.

In mid-January, a similar ship flying the Togolese flag was intercepted in the same area south-east of the Canary Islands: the emergency services found the same amount of cocaine on the "Blume".

According to the police, a total of nine tons of drugs were confiscated in January.

Spain's geographic proximity to North Africa, a key source of hashish, and close ties to former colonies in Latin America have made the country a gateway to Europe for the drug trade.

ktz/AFP

Source: spiegel

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