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2.4 tons of cocaine seized from fishing boat in Atlantic Ocean after tip from customs department

The French navy has seized 2.4 tons of cocaine from a Venezuelan fishing boat in the Atlantic, authorities said Monday.

Acting on a tip from the customs department, a helicopter from the surveillance frigate Ventose landed a team on the fishing boat about 1,500 kilometers northeast of the Caribbean island of Martinique, France’s Caribbean Armed Services department said.

The boat, the crew and the cocaine were handed over to Venezuelan authorities, the department said in a Facebook post.

The incident marked yet another large seizure of cocaine in the same waters this month. On May 2 and May 9, authorities said the Ventôse and the patrol vessel La Résolue seized 2,466 kilograms of cocaine in the Atlantic, off the coast of the Antilles. The French navy posted images of the seizure.

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On May 2 and May 9, 2024, the French navy said it seized 2,466 kilograms of cocaine in the Atlantic.  

French Navy

 

The military department said it had now seized more than 12 tons of narcotics this year. The Caribbean is taking on growing importance in the trafficking of cocaine from South America to Europe and North America.

The 22.7 tons of cocaine intercepted in the region in 2022 was more than five times the figure of a decade earlier.

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On May 2 and May 9, 2024, the French navy said it seized 2,466 kilograms of cocaine in the Atlantic.  

French Navy

 

International drug traffickers routinely use different kinds of boats to move narcotics. Earlier this month, Italian police announced the seizure of a remote-controlled submarine likely intended to transport drugs as part of an international drug trafficking network.

Much larger semi-submersibles, which cannot go fully underwater, are popular among international drug traffickers as they can often elude detection by authorities. The so-called “narco-subs” are sometimes seized in Colombian waters while heading to the United States, Central America and Europe.

Colombia produces about 60% of the cocaine found in the world.

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