Cocaine concealed as charcoal with a market value of up to 35 million euros ($41.4 million) has been confiscated in a combined effort by the Irish and Dutch officials.
The cocaine was discovered inside two containers in the Netherlands’ Port of Rotterdam shipped from South America. Ireland’s national police and security service, the Garda Sochána, reported it was done with the intention to import up to a half-ton of cocaine to Ireland.
The narcotics, which were estimated to be valued up to $41.4 million, were concealed as charcoal.
It was discovered that two containers, each holding up to 2,000 bags of charcoal, were being transported via Rotterdam Port in the Netherlands where they were intercepted before reaching the final destination.
The Irish Navy aided in the transportation of the containers to Ireland, where they were hauled onshore at Dublin Port under armed escort.
Thanks to the Garda canines and a mobile x-ray scanner, anomalies in a number of bags that looked to contain charcoal were identified.
Subsequent forensic examinations verified the presence of cocaine in the bags.
“This is an important milestone in the Garda Sochána’s campaign to disrupt and dismantle organized crime organisations accused of importing cocaine and other controlled substances into Ireland,” Assistant Commissioner John O’Driscoll stated.
Mr O’Driscoll stated that the inquiry had a “major international dimension” and “emphasizes the critical nature of cooperation among law enforcement agencies throughout Europe and beyond.”
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