Cocaine stash worth $28m found in German grocer’s banana crates

Cocaine stash worth $28m found in German grocer’s banana crates Cocaine The banana crates were delivered by ship from Latin America to six stores and a distribution warehouse in the state of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern. Stores and warehouses in Germany operated by the discount supermarket chain Aldi have come under scrutiny. “I am very sure that this […]



Cocaine stash worth $28m found in German grocer’s banana crates


The banana crates were delivered by ship from Latin America to six stores and a distribution warehouse in the state of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern.

Stores and warehouses in Germany operated by the discount supermarket chain Aldi have come under scrutiny.

“I am very sure that this is the largest amount of cocaine ever found in Mecklenburg-Vorpommern,’’ a spokesperson for the criminal investigation office said.

Aldi outlets in other states around the country had also been questioned, but as of midday Thursday, no further cocaine finds had been reported, the Rostock prosecutors said.

In February, prosecutors in the southern state of Bavaria charged eight men with smuggling two tons of cocaine valued at close to 500 million dollars to Germany with banana crates shipped from Ecuador.


German customs destroys 4.5 tons of cocaine on container ship



German Customs says it has destroyed 4.5 tons of cocaine found aboard a container ship in the northern port of Hamburg.

It was the largest quantity ever found in Germany, Hamburg Customs said on Friday, valuing it at around one billion euros ($1.1 billion).

The consignment was found, some two weeks ago and had been hidden in 211 sports bags.
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Colombian court maintains ban on aerial spraying of glyphosate



Colombia’s Constitutional Court on Thursday maintained a judicial ban on the aerial spraying of illicit coca crops with glyphosate.

The court said that the government would first have to prove that the weed killer was not harmful to human health and the environment.

However, President Ivan Duque had asked the court to lift the ban, arguing that glyphosate, suspected of being carcinogenic, was a necessary tool in the fight against cocaine trafficking.

The government says glyphosate is the most efficient way to eradicate coca,the plant cocaine is made from.

It added that glyphosate saves lives, because it can replace manual uprooting done by soldiers who would risk stepping on mines planted by drug traffickers.

However, the court maintained the strict conditions it had set earlier, including having to provide scientific proof that glyphosate is safe and having to consult communities in areas where fumigation would take place.

The court said, the government did not need to prove the total absence of any possible harm, because that was practically impossible.

It added that the government has not provided proof of having met the conditions so far. It will be up to the National Drug Council to determine whether it does so.

Justice Minister, Margarita Cabello said the government would seek permission from the council “to use aerial spraying as one more tool in the fight against illegal crops.’’

The cocaine that can be manufactured in that area is worth 2.7 billion dollars on the local market.

The previous government suspended spraying with glyphosate in 2015 after the Constitutional Court said it could carry health risks.

Officials in the south-western department of Narino, which produces the most coca among Colombia’s 32 departments, told dpa glyphosate is not an effective means of dissuading farmers from growing the lucrative plant.

Narino Governor Camilo Romero said in an interview , about 3.8 million litres of glyphosate were sprayed in Narino between 2005 and 2014, but the surface under coca cultivation increased by 4,000 hectares during that time.

“Families that live off illegal crops, after their land is sprayed, move to another territory in order to sow coca again,’’ Romero said.

The governor also disputed claims by the government that glyphosate is cheap adding that eradication with glyphosate costs 72 million pesos (23,000 dollars) per hectare, twice as much as subsidising voluntary crop substitution.

Farmers near the port city of Tumaco told dpa that previous glyphosate sprayings had killed their food crops while coca plants survived.

“Bees died, parakeets died. Coca was the only one of our crops that resisted the glyphosate,” farmer Javier Ortega said.
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Filipino fishermen find over $4m worth of cocaine in water




over 4 million dollars from waters off an eastern Philippine province, police said on Tuesday.

The cocaine was contained in 12 boxes spotted floating in waters off the coast of Gubat town in Sorsogon province,

380 kilometres south-east of Manila, a police report said.

The fishermen reported the sighting to police and took the boxes out of the water on Monday.

“The haul totalled 39 kilos with market value of 218.4 million pesos 4.2 million dollars,” the police report said.

Fishermen and residents of coastal towns in mostly eastern parts of the Philippines have been recovering bricks of

cocaine in waters of their communities since February.

Authorities said the bricks of cocaine were being thrown near the shores as a way to smuggle the illegal drug into the


The administration of President Rodrigo Duterte has been waging an aggressive campaign against drugs, in which

over 5,000 people have been killed since 2016.

The New York-based Human Rights Watch said local rights and church groups estimated the true death toll

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NDLEA nabs Kenyan mother of 2 with 6.5 kilograms of Cocaine



The National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) says it has apprehended a 33-year-old Kenyan lady with 6.5 kilogrammes of cocaine at the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja (NAIA).

The agency made this known in a statement by its Head, Public Affairs Unit, Mr Jonah Achema, on Monday in Abuja, and said that the lady while trying to smuggle the drug into the country.

Achema said that the arrest was made by the agency’s Special Area Command at the airport, and named the suspect as Angela Wairimu, a single mother of two.

He said that the suspect was apprehended on arrival from South Africa aboard an Ethiopian Airline Flight to Abuja.

“Some of the illicit substance was concealed in the false bottom of a travelling bag which also contained two wrapped parcels of the same illicit drug.

“She carried the bag as hand luggage,” he said.

According to Achema, Wairimu who shuttles between Kenya and South Africa claimed to be a modelling expert and a trader in clothes and cosmetics.

He said that the suspect claimed a friend in South Africa approached her to assist an unknown person to deliver the brief case containing wears in Nigeria which was brought to her at the Airport through an errand boy.

“She was to deliver the consignment to the husband of the sender who was to meet her at the airport in Abuja.

“She claimed to be on her second trip to Nigeria to procure home-made body beauty products and local fabrics for her enterprise called La Model in South Africa and Kenya.

“She denied being under any financial inducement but confessed that her daughter was suffering from acute leukaemia which put her under financial pressure,” he added.

According to the NDLEA Commander at the airport, Mr Hamisu Lawan, the seizure was the biggest cocaine shipment in recent times made by the command.

“We have had seizures of Heroin, Ephedrine and Methamphetamine going to Southern Africa and in some cases to Asia, and even as far as the Pacific region such as New Zealand.

“Although we are not surprised at cocaine coming from South Africa which is largely due to flight network connection, operating two flights daily from Sao Paulo,’’ he said.

The commander canvassed for the deployment of NDLEA officers and men in certain source countries as a matter of national security interest.

He advised drug traffickers to desist from testing the will of the agency saying “no matter the mode used by drug traffickers to conceal illicit drugs, we are well trained to detect it,” he stated.

He equally called for urgent implementation of Advance Passenger Information (API) and Passenger Name Record (PNR) at the airports.

Edited by Muhyideen Jimoh and Olisa Ifeajika
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