Story By: James King, Sub-Editor: Marija Stojkoska, Agency: Newsflash
German cops and UK customs officials have smashed a major drug trafficking ring after a one-year investigation that resulted in tons of drugs and weapons being seized.
The operation, which resulted in the biggest ever drug seize in Hamburg, involved around 500 police and customs officials and concluded yesterday with a raid on 38 apartments and businesses resulting in 15 arrests.
The suspects are accused of importing around two tons of cocaine into Germany and Europe including the UK where one shipment was intercepted by officials in London.
The 15 detainees, plus several other suspects, are aged between 19 and 58 and have Ghanaian, Lebanese, Serbian, Iraqi, Croatian, Turkish, Polish, Albanian, and German nationalities.
They are suspected of receiving cocaine smuggled in containers from South America at the Port of Hamburg on multiple occasions, and a contact who knew how the port operates gave them advice on how to beat controls and checks.
The gang used forged documents to collect the containers, and when that sometimes failed they arranged to have them stolen. As a result some of those arrested were found to be lorry drivers.
The investigation started after the seizure of 22 kilogrammes of cocaine by Dutch customs officials in October last year.
Another container from Ecuador was then found with a thousand cartons of bananas with 381 kilogrammes of cocaine hidden when it was searched in March 2020.
They then received another 1.2 tons of cocaine in a container of rice that arrived in the Port of Hamburg in June this year.
The police in London found another container with a false bottom containing 380 kilogrammes of cocaine that was destined for Hamburg in mid-July this year.
As well as the arrests, police seized EUR 125,000 in cash, 10 guns, and a BMW X6.
The investigation continues.
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