Customs investigators discovered a record amount of cocaine in the port of Hamburg.
Experts see the find as a wake-up call and call for a “complete reorganization” in the fight against drug smuggling.
Hamburg - The customs investigators in the Port of Hamburg have achieved a huge coup.
A check of five containers that came to the Hanseatic city from Paraguay revealed around 16 tons of cocaine - the largest cocaine find of all time in Germany and Europe, as the Hamburg customs investigation office announced on Wednesday.
The control took place on February 12th.
Cocaine found in the port of Hamburg: Customs discovered more than 16 tons of drugs
The five containers examined "had been classified as suspicious due to an extensive risk analysis carried out by several European customs authorities," the press release continues.
The affected containers should actually contain tin cans with filler.
On closer inspection in the container inspection facility in the Port of Hamburg, however, “clear irregularities” were found.
"Apparently after a layer of real goods directly behind the container door, numerous tin cans were also filled with other goods," said the Hamburg customs investigation office.
After the containers were unloaded, more than 16 tons of cocaine could be discovered in more than 1700 doses.
Cocaine discovery in Hamburg: street sales value of the drugs "between 1.5 and 3.5 billion euros"
"The street sales value of drugs is between 1.5 and 3.5 billion euros," said René Matschke, head of the customs investigation office, to the
Rolf Bösinger, the state secretary responsible for customs in the Federal Ministry of Finance, congratulated the investigators on their success.
"With this blow against organized drug-related crime - also thanks to the exemplary cooperation with the European partner authorities - the German customs authorities have once again impressively demonstrated their effectiveness," said Bösinger.
Hamburg Customs has seized more than 16 tons of cocaine in five containers from Paraguay.
© Hamburg Customs Investigation Office / dpa
Another cocaine discovery in Belgium - suspect arrested in the Netherlands
After the find on February 12, “numerous operational measures were planned and carried out” in cooperation with the Dutch investigative authorities, announced the customs investigation office.
As part of this investigation, another 7.2 tonnes of cocaine were seized in the port of Antwerp in Belgium last Sunday (February 21).
A 28-year-old man from Vlaardingen near Rotterdam was arrested in the Netherlands on Wednesday.
He is suspected of being responsible for the import of more than 23 tons of cocaine.
After cocaine was found in Hamburg: Experts warn of "gigantic security problem"
Sebastian Fiedler from the Bund Deutscher Kriminalbeamter (BDK) told the
that this cocaine discovery in the port of Hamburg must be a "big wake-up call".
The drug smuggling is a "gigantic security problem".
The enormously high profits ultimately flowed into new criminal offenses and also into the legal economy.
Fiedler complained that customs were "terribly badly organized" in the fight against drug crime.
Frank Buckenhofer from the police and customs union GdP also expressed sharp criticism of the
: "Germany is pitifully positioned in the
Fiedler therefore called for a "complete reorganization" in this area.
Federal Finance Minister Olaf Scholz is responsible for this.
The SPD's candidate for chancellor must realize that he is also the chief of police, said Fiedler.
He spoke out in favor of convening a "drug summit".
List of rubric lists: © Axel Heimken