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Recording by the British police: bananas and suspicious packages

Photo: AFP

British investigators have seized 5.7 tons of cocaine that were on their way to Hamburg.

With an estimated street value of 450 million pounds (525 million euros), it is the largest shipment of so-called Class A drugs to have been seized in Great Britain to date, the National Crime Agency (NCA) and the British Border Guard said on Friday night Friday with.

The drug was confiscated on February 8th in the port of the southern English city of Southampton.

The drugs were therefore hidden in a container with bananas from South America.

The cocaine was supposed to be distributed from Hamburg.

It was said that the criminal networks involved should now be identified together with European partners.

"This record-breaking seizure represents a major blow to the international organized crime cartels involved and deprives them of massive profits," said NCA Director Chris Farrimond.

"Although the shipment in this case was destined for continental Europe, I have no doubt that a significant portion would have ended up back here in the UK and been sold by British criminal gangs."

The largest cocaine discovery in Great Britain to date was 3.7 tons, which were also seized in Southampton on the English Channel in 2022.

The NCA estimates that criminal gangs in the UK make around £4 billion a year from cocaine.

In recent years, violence related to drug trafficking has increased exponentially.

Find in Hamburg has only now become public

There were also finds in Hamburg itself.

Customs officials seized around 500 kilos of cocaine on a ship in the port of the Hanseatic city.

The cocaine was discovered on October 21st, but the discovery is only now known.

The “Bild” newspaper first reported.

The drug was found on board the ship “Grande Amburgo,” a spokesman for the customs investigation office said on Thursday.

Due to the ongoing investigation, no further details could be revealed.

According to the press report, the ship is said to have come from the Brazilian port of Santos near São Paulo.

Already there, the authorities discovered more than 400 kilograms of cocaine in the equipment compartment of a fire engine on board.

Spanish authorities found another 950 kilos of the drug when the ship stopped in a port in Tenerife.

Last year, the Hamburg customs investigation office seized a record amount of more than 30 tons of cocaine in German seaports.