Dutch customs intercepted more than four tonnes of cocaine in the port of Rotterdam, one of the largest seizures to date, the prosecution said on Friday (September 17th).
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The drug, whose market value has been estimated at 301 million euros, was discovered overnight from Thursday to Friday aboard a container loaded with wood from Suriname and bound for a company in Poland.
This is not the biggest seizure but it is one of the biggest,
" a spokesman for the prosecution told AFP.
The 4022 kilograms of drugs seized were destroyed, the prosecution said in a statement.
4,600 kilos seized in 2005
The Netherlands has become a major entry point for drugs - especially cocaine - into Europe, via Rotterdam, the continent's largest port.
In 2005, 4,600 kilos of cocaine were seized in the port, which is to date "
the largest seizure ever recorded in Rotterdam
", said the spokesperson.
European police agency Europol said in a report earlier this month that Belgium and the Netherlands have become the main hubs for trafficking cocaine into Europe.
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Taking advantage of the increased supply of cocaine, particularly from Colombia, criminal organizations use the ports of Rotterdam, Hamburg (Germany) and especially Antwerp (Belgium) to introduce drugs into the Netherlands, hence it is transported throughout Europe, the report said. In February, a joint operation by Belgian, Dutch and German police led to a record seizure in Hamburg and Antwerp of 23 tonnes of cocaine destined for the Netherlands.