Investigations at the port of Hamburg: Police find tons of cocaine in tuna cans

An X-ray check at the port leads the Hamburg police to a successful search.

Investigations at the port of Hamburg: Police find tons of cocaine in tuna cans

An X-ray check at the port leads the Hamburg police to a successful search. The scan reveals abnormalities in canned fish and sacks full of metal granules. A closer look reveals that it is cocaine worth 100 million euros.

Investigators in the port of Hamburg have landed two sensitive blows against cocaine smuggling. In containers from Brazil and Ecuador, they confiscated a total of almost 3.6 tons of the drug, according to customs in Hamburg. The authority estimated the street value of the confiscated drug at at least 100 million euros. The successes were also achieved with the help of X-ray inspection by the container inspection system, explained customs.

"Anomalies" were found during the inspection, which turned out to be hidden cocaine on closer inspection of the cargo, according to a statement. As early as November 29 of this year, officials had secured a good two tons of cocaine between canned tuna in a container from Ecuador.

Just a few days later, on December 1, they found more than a ton and a half of cocaine in two containers from Brazil loaded with bags of metal granules. Matthias Virmond, the deputy head of the Hamburg Customs Investigation Office, spoke of "two outstanding blows against international drug-related crime".

The customs investigators were working flat out to find out who was behind them. "Our goal is to uncover and permanently disrupt the perpetrator structures." The finds are further evidence of the "persistently high pressure to supply cocaine to Europe," customs officials said.

At the end of January, officials discovered the year's largest amount of drugs in the port in a container with bananas from Ecuador: a good 2.6 tons. In total, customs found around 9.5 tons of cocaine in 2022 - significantly less than the record amount of 19 tons in the previous year.

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