Nearly €100 million in cocaine found in tinned tuna, pineapple shipments

Bundles of cocaine found in a sea container full of tinned tuna fish. June 30, 2020
Bundles of cocaine found in a sea container full of tinned tuna fish. June 30, 2020Openbaar Ministerie RotterdamOpenbaar Ministerie

Dutch customs agents found 493 kilograms of cocaine in a sea container loaded with tins of tuna. The discovery was made at the Port of Rotterdam on Tuesday, and had a street value of over 37 million euros, a spokesperson for financial crimes inspectorate FIOD told NL Times.

The container arrived from Cartagena, Colombia and was on its way to a company in the German city of Kempen. The drugs have since been destroyed.

That bust closed out the first six months of 2020, with Rotterdam authorities having tracked down about 18 thousand kilos of cocaine. At just over half the amount seized for the entirety of 2019, it put the Rotterdam authorities on pace to seize a higher quantity of the drug in 2020. Last year, 33,732 kilograms of the drug were found at the Rotterdam Port.

Five days before the tinned tuna bust, authorities working out of Amsterdam and The Hague managed to seize a shipment of 780 kilograms of cocaine. The drugs were hidden in a container loaded with pineapples from Costa Rica.

The drugs had a street value of over 58 million euros according to a spokesman from told NL Times.

The packages of cocaine were found inside a cooling and storage company in Westland, Zuid-Holland. There were no arrests in the case.

Both cases were being investigated by Hit and Run Cargo Teams (HARC), a joint effort between the OM, Customs, the port police and financial crimes inspectorate FIOD. The tinned tuna case was being handled by HARC-Rotterdam, while the discovery in Westland was undertaken by HARC-Amsterdam.

A portion of a 58 million euro cocaine shipment found in pineapples from Costa Rica. June 25, 2020
A portion of a 58 million euro cocaine shipment found in pineapples from Costa Rica. June 25, 2020FIODFIOD

Tags: