New Zealand celebrates largest ever drug bust — RT World News

A navy vessel intercepted 3.5 tonnes of cocaine floating in the Pacific Ocean – enough to supply Australia for a year

More than 3.5 tonnes of cocaine were found floating in the Pacific Ocean last week, New Zealand police confirmed on Wednesday. The transport marks the largest drug seizure ever in the country.

The cocaine, packaged in 81 plastic-wrapped bales covered in netting fitted with flotation devices, was located in a joint operation involving the New Zealand Police, Customs Service and a defense force called Operation Hydros which was launched in December to monitor “suspicious vessel movements”, according to a police statement. The Royal Navy ship HMNZS Manawanui picked up the loot and brought it back to Auckland, where it is to be destroyed.

Worth around NZ$500 million ($316 million) wholesale, the cocaine is believed to have supplied the Australian market for an entire year – and the New Zealand market for 30 years, the commissioner has claimed. Andrew Coster font.

While the method of packaging and delivery was not unusual for the region, according to Greg Williams, leader of the police organized crime group, the amount of cocaine was about four times greater than the transport that previously held the record.

No arrests have been made and the police have not named any suspects. Police believe the drop location is a “waypoint” for international drug traffickers.

Authorities attributed the discovery to Operation Hydros, stressing the need for law enforcement to work with other government departments. “We see maybe this is just an indication that transnational organized crime groups are testing the market in different ways, so as agencies we need to collaborate,” Acting Customs Comptroller Bill Perry said.

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