€18m in cocaine found in Brazilian orange, printer ink shipments

Duffel bags filled with 212 kilograms of cocaine in a shipment of printer ink from Brazil. July 25, 2020
Duffel bags filled with 212 kilograms of cocaine in a shipment of printer ink from Brazil. July 25, 2020OM Rotterdam / CustomsOpenbaar Ministerie

Customs officers working at the Port of Rotterdam found two different shipments concealing a total of 242 kilograms of cocaine, the Public Prosecution Service (OM) said. The cocaine carried a street value of over 18 million euros, the OM said on Saturday.

Both shipments were discovered in containers which arrived on Wednesday and were screened on Saturday, beginning with a batch of 30 kilograms found in a sea container filled with the pulp of oranges. The citrus product was destined for a Rotterdam company, and had arrived on a vessel which departed from Santos, Brazil. The cocaine was found hidden behind a wall inside the container.

The much bigger load of 212 kilograms of the drug was found in a container filled with printer ink, the OM said. The shipment was to be delivered to a company in Germany, after arriving in Rotterdam from Paranagua, Brazil. The drugs were found inside 11 duffel bags stuffed in the sea container.

Neither the Rotterdam company receiving the orange pulp nor the German company with the ink consignment were suspected of wrongdoing, the OM said.

All 242 kilograms of cocaine were destroyed. The drug cases were being investigated by the Rotterdam Hit-and-Run Cargo team, a joint service from the customs office, the tax authority's financial crimes inspectorate, the Rotterdam port police and the Rotterdam office of the OM.

Tags: