Border force officials have seized cocaine with a street value of £680,000 after discovering the haul hidden among cans of Pepsi Max cola at the Port of Dover.
Officials found the 17 kilograms of the drug after searching a Bulgarian freight lorry that had arrived on a ferry from the Netherlands on Friday 9 December. Several packages were found hidden under a legitimate shipment of Pepsi Max. The investigation has been handed over to the National Crime Agency.
The driver, a 40-year-old man with dual Macedonian and Bulgarian nationality, was arrested and released on bail pending further enquiries.
“This is a significant seizure which has prevented a large quantity of dangerous substances reaching the UK’s streets.
“As this case shows, our officers are on constant alert to stop drugs, weapons and other banned goods entering the country.
“We work in partnership with the National Crime Agency (NCA) to disrupt traffickers and prevent illegal drugs causing harm to communities.”
Anyone with information about activity they suspect may be linked to smuggling can call the Border Force hotline on 0800 59 5000.
Kelvin Willmott, 30, from Bournemouth, pleaded guilty at Bournemouth Crown Court to possession with intent to supply heroin and crack cocaine and being concerned in the supply of heroin and crack cocaine. He was jailed for four years.
The court was told that on 11 February 2016, Willmott was spotted by police in the back seat of a Nissan Micra on Durrant Road selling drugs to another person. Following his arrest, he was searched in custody where 14 small wraps of crack cocaine and 10 small wraps of heroin were found in his underwear.
On 14 April 2016, Bournemouth officers arrested Willmott again as he was wanted on a court warrant. A search of him found 64 wraps of heroin and crack cocaine.
While on police bail for the incident on 11 February, Willmott was again seen by officers on 3 May 2016 acting suspiciously in a car park on Cotlands Road. He was searched and four white wraps containing suspected drugs were recovered.
Two men who sailed a yacht carrying almost a ton of cocaine across the Atlantic have been sentenced to more than 34 years in prison.
Sailing the yacht were Raymond Aalders, 47, and skipper, Hendrik Brugmans, 69, both Dutch nationals.
They were both arrested after the yacht Golem was intercepted by a Border Force cutter off the coast of Rye on 31 August 2015.
The 56-foot yacht was escorted into Dover marina, where a search by specialist Border Force teams revealed hundreds of packages of drugs.
Forensic tests on the packages revealed the cocaine was 70 percent pure, and if adulterated and sold in the UK would have had a potential street value of around £120 million.
In interviews with NCA officers they both admitted sailing the vessel from Curacao in the southern Caribbean.
Both Brugmans and Aalders pleaded guilty to importing class A drugs and were sentenced at Maidstone Crown Court to 20 years and nine months, and 14 years respectively.
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Police have issued a warning about a "rogue" batch of drugs after a 36-year-old was found dead in a car park in Salisbury.
Emergency crews were called to Culver Street on Friday evening amid reports a woman had collapsed.
Wiltshire Police said the woman was pronounced dead at the scene and believe the deceased may have taken a quantity of contaminated heroin.
"I would of course urge everyone to steer well clear of any illegal drug use but following this tragic incident, we have concerns that there may be a quantity of contaminated heroin in our community which could have the potential to lead to further illness or death.
"We would like to reassure the local community that we are carrying out a detailed and robust investigation following this death and enquiries will be continuing.
"If anyone has any information on this incident, or is able to help us with inquiries to establish where these drugs have come from, please call us on 101 immediately. All information we receive will be treated in the strictest confidence. Alternatively, information can be given to Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800." 555 111."
A joint operation involving UK and French law enforcement has led to the seizure of around 2.4 tonnes of cocaine from a freighter a few miles off the South Coast.
The Moldovan flagged MV Carib Palm was intercepted in the Eastern Channel. It had sailed from Colombia and was on its way to Gdansk in Poland.
The interception, led by French Customs and supported by Border Force and the Royal Navy patrol vessel HMS Severn, was coordinated by the UK's National Maritime Information Centre (NMIC) and the Maritime Analysis and Operational Centre - Narcotics (MAOC-N) in Lisbon.
The ship was taken to the port of Boulogne-sur-Mer where it was searched by French Customs.
In the UK the drugs could have had a potential street value in excess of £350 million.
The twelve crew members, who were Georgian, Turkish and Ukrainian, were arrested.
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Police are warning about the dangers of drugs stolen from a vet's practice in Basingstoke.
Among the drugs taken from GP Vet Practice were 5ml bottles and vials of anaesthetic, sedatives, opiates and euthanasia solution.
A 500ml bottle of anaesthetic was also stolen along with tranquiliser tablets and ketamine tablets.
PC Mike Ahearne of the Northern Investigations Team said: “We are urging anyone who has come into contact with these drugs not to use them. They are highly dangerous. We have notified Ambulance Services and the Hospitals that these drugs have been stolen and are appealing to anyone who has been offered these types of drugs to call us immediately on 101 quoting 44150334102.”