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Cocaine Seized from Containership in Sydney

© Bjorn Bjornesjo / MarineTraffic.com

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Australian law enforcement has seized 700 kilograms of cocaine from a Maersk containership at Sydney's Port Botany.

The dugs were discovered by Australian Border Force (ABF) during a July 22 inspection of shipping containers on the Singapore-flagged Maersk Inverness, which had docked a day earlier. The haul was found packaged in denim bags inside a shipping container described as containing wood products.

AFP investigators seized 28 denim bags, each holding about 25kg of cocaine in brick form. Forensic examination of the drugs identified different emblems on the bricks of cocaine, including the numerals '5' and '365' and the word 'Netflix'.

Purchasers on Australia's east coast can pay up to $400,000 (US$278,700) for a kilogram of cocaine depending on availability and purity, with this amount of cocaine representing at least $280 million dollars (US$195.1 million), ABF said.

Preliminary enquiries on the ship have been completed, and the vessel has been allowed to continue its journey.

AFP Detective Inspector Luke Wilson said the containership had stopped at ports in Central and South America before making its way to Australia.

"We are still investigating where the drugs were loaded and who was planning to collect them in Australia," Wilson said.

"The interception of this amount of drugs would be a significant blow to a well-resourced syndicate, and prevents millions of dollars of drug profit flowing back into the syndicate to fund their lavish lifestyles or next criminal venture."

ABF Detained Goods NSW Superintendent Joanne Yeats said, "This seizure demonstrates the technical expertise of our dedicated ABF officers who made the initial detection and stopped this large shipment of cocaine from entering our community.

"We continue to work with our law enforcement partners to ensure the Australian community is kept safe from the importation of dangerous drugs."

Aug 7, 2022

 

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