Nearly A Ton Of Cocaine Washes Up On French Beach
Maritime police in northwest France found nearly a ton of cocaine washed up on a beach on the English Channel on Feb. 26.
The drugs were found near the town of Reville on the Cotentin Peninsula, according to France’s maritime authority for the English Channel and North Sea.
The cocaine, weighing about 1,875 pounds (850 kilograms) in total, was found in two large packages linked by a rope, the authorities said on Feb. 28.
Police are trying to determine whether the drugs fell from a ship or were intentionally floated to the shore for traffickers to pick up.
Another report by AFP citing unnamed sources said more drugs were found washed up on the northern French coast on March 1.
Drug Smuggling Surge
There has been a surge in cocaine and crack smuggling into Europe, accompanied by unprecedented drug violence in some areas.
The North Sea port cities of Antwerp in Belgium and Rotterdam in the Netherlands have become the main gateway for Latin American cocaine cartels into Europe.
On Feb. 14, two Dutchmen, aged 27 and 46, were arrested by Belgian police, and almost 8,818 pounds (4,000 kilograms) of cocaine were seized.
Police found an address in a navigation app used by the two men. That address led police to a hangar with a container filled with 68 bags of cocaine.
Police also arrested seven other men found in the hangar.
Cocaine was found in over 1,700 tins of wall filler, after German authorities seized more than 16 tons of cocaine in the northern port city of Hamburg, Germany, on Feb. 24, 2020, in Europe’s largest cocaine haul to date. (Cathrin Mueller/Reuters)
Narcotics production is growing in Europe, according to an estimate published in January by the EU drugs agency, which warned of a proliferation of new psychoactive substances being sold and consumed on the continent.
The EU drugs agency said that new evidence was emerging of rising drug production in Europe, confirming its earlier warning about the continent turning into a global hub for narcotics and no longer just a consumption market.
“Synthetic drug production continues to increase in Europe,” the report warned, noting that illegal laboratories in Europe churn out huge amounts of amphetamine, methamphetamine, and other synthetic drugs for local consumption and export outside Europe.
Drugs and the chemicals needed to produce them are still largely imported into Europe from other parts of the world, including South America and Asia.
More than 350 labs for synthetic drugs were detected and dismantled in 2020 in Europe, the latest year for which data is available, the EU agency said.
Sun, 03/05/2023 – 07:00