Tuesday, 2 December 2008

Seizure of cocaine worth over one million pounds from a fishing vessel co-owned by Spanish and local company.

The fishing vessel, “Venturer”, is currently anchored in Port Williams, outside the capital Stanley, next to another trawler belonging to the same company.

Royal Falkland Islands Police confirmed that they had made a seizure of cocaine worth over one million pounds from a fishing vessel co-owned by Spanish and local company. Falklands’ Chief Police Officer Paul Elliot said that a joint operation involving the Falkland Islands Customs and Immigration Department, the JSPSU Dog Section and the Royal Falkland Islands Police resulted in the arrest of six foreign seamen and the seizure of a large quantity of a class A drug, namely over 30 kilos of cocaine with an estimate street value of over one million pounds (1.6 million US dollars).Apparently the drug was sniffed by a dog which has a previous live find.
Mr. Elliot reported that the Foreign and Commonwealth Office are aware of the catch and have informed the appropriate British authorities.A representative from the local Falklands’ company Fortuna, Stuart Wallace made a brief statement on the incident: A number of employees of one of our group companies have been arrested in connection with the possession of an illegal drug.Mr. Wallace said that the Company is of course co-operating fully with the ongoing investigation being carried out by the relevant authorities.Reliable Falklands’ sources have said that as the tightening of routes from cocaine producing areas to Europe via United States and the Caribbean, “we shouldn’t be surprised these things happen, but I believe the Falklands are prepared for such a challenge”.The Falklands main source of income is fisheries, particularly squid most of which is transhipped in the Islands or in the Uruguayan port of Montevideo for export to Europe.Recently Uruguayan authorities working on tips from the US and Spain busted an international organization that sent illegal drugs taking advantage of frozen fish exports from the port of Montevideo to Spain.

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