Dh3.67 billion worth of drugs seized in huge bust

Dh3.67 billion worth of drugs seized in huge bust
Dh3.67 billion worth of drugs seized in huge bust

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Aden - Yasmine El Tohamy - Tonnes of drugs stored in flour containers.

Uruguay naval and customs officers seized 4.4 tonnes of cocaine, estimated to be worth over $1 billion (Dh3.67 billion approx), hidden in flour containers in Montevideo port.

Described as the "biggest blow to drug traffickers in Uruguay's history", officers revealed that another 1.5 tonnes of cocaine was later found on a ranch.

The drugs were concealed in four soy flour containers destined for Lome, the capital of Togo, reported BBC.

Uruguay is increasingly being used as a transit point to move drugs from Latin America to Africa and Europe. Earlier in November, authorities seized a container with three tonnes of cocaine, also in Montevideo, bound for Cotonou in Benin via the Spanish island of Tenerife.

Regrading the recent record haul, officers got suspicious as the export firm transporting soya had not exported such a huge quantity of the flour in the past. Besides, soya is not widely consumed in Africa.

Uruguay's customs director, Jaime Borgiani, said it was not known exactly where the cocaine had originated but that it was loaded on to trucks on Tuesday at a ranch in the south-western Soriano department, 290km (180 miles) from Montevideo.

The ministry posted a photo of some of the drugs on Twitter.

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