The Royal Navy has fished £1 million worth of cannabis out of the Mediterranean after packages of the drug were dumped by smugglers.

HMS St Albans, a warship based at Portsmouth, was carrying out a routine security patrol when it discovered the traffickers travelling in a small boat.

A Royal Navy spokesperson said: "HMS St Albans spotted a small boat acting suspiciously and so launched her Merlin helicopter, this spooked the small boat crew who then tossed several large packages into the water before speeding off into the dusk.

"The frigate then sent one of her sea boats to investigate the packages which later turned out to be approximately 320kg of cannabis resin."

HMS St Albans was on hand to seize the drugs Credit: Ministry of Defence

Lieutenant Commander Jeff Gulliver, HMS St Albans' second-in-command, said: "The Mediterranean is a well known smuggling route for drugs into Europe and the UK.

"The team have trained long and hard at home for tasks such as this. Having only just deployed from UK last Monday, it is great for them to prove themselves so soon. I'm proud of my sailors for reacting so quickly and helping to keep these drugs off the streets."

A small boat involved in the HMS St Albans drugs seizure Credit: Ministry of Defence

It's the second drugs find carried out by the Royal Navy in the area in the past two weeks as HMS Richmond also recovered 1,015kg of cannabis worth £3 million.