Rotterdam customs seize €30 million cocaine shipments

Customs at the port of Rotterdam intercepted two consignments of cocaine with a combined weight of 1069 kg on Friday, NL Times reports.

The first batch of 839 kg was found in a shipping container with two vintage Volkswagen vans. The shipment came from Brazil. According to the Public Prosecution Service, the recipient of the vehicles probably had nothing to do with the smuggling.

Soon after, customs officers found another shipment of 230 kg of cocaine in a container full of beer. Unroasted nuts were also found among the bags of drugs. Further investigation revealed that the smugglers probably used the so-called switch method whereby contraband is quickly transferred from one container to another after arrival at the port.

Elsewhere in the harbour, a shipment with raw nuts from Argentina was found. The container appears to have been used to transport cocaine to the Netherlands. The nuts were destined for a company in Russia, which probably has nothing to do with the drugs.

The Hit and Run Cargo (HARC) Team, in partnership with customs, the Fiscal Information and Investigation Service (FIOD), seaport police, and the Public Prosecution in Rotterdam, is further investigating the case. The drugs have since been destroyed.

Cocaine-bust in Roosendaal

On the same day, police discovered 750 kg of cocaine at a business park in Roosendaal following a tip-off.

The drugs have since been examined and then removed for destruction. The case is currently being investigated, with no known suspects at the moment of writing. The estimated value of the load is around 30 million euros.

Image: Eric Bakker, Port of Rotterdam Authority

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