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Police Find £33m Of Cocaine Inside Load Of Onion Rings

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Police Find £33m Of Cocaine Inside Load Of Onion Rings

A haul of 418kg of cocaine has been seized by police inside a lorry containing a load of frozen onion rings.

An investigation from the National Crime Agency (NCA) led to the lorry being stopped by Border Force officers at the UK inbound zone in Coquelles, France on Thursday evening.

The Class A drugs had a street value of £33 million, the agency has said.

Piotr Perzenowski, 30, of Mazowieckie, Poland, has since charged with smuggling Class A drugs.

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He appeared at Folkestone Magistrates' Court and was remanded to appear at Canterbury Crown Court on 13 December.

Credit: Alamy
Credit: Alamy

NCA Branch Commander Mark Howes said: "This was a really significant amount of drugs taken out of circulation.

"The seizure will deprive the organised crime group responsible for them of profit which would have fuelled more offending.

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"Working with our partners such as Border Force we will continue to fight the Class A drugs threat in our mission to protect the public."

Earlier this year, cops seized a whopping 2.3 tonnes of cocaine estimated to be worth around £184 million which smugglers attempted to bring into the UK in a banana shipment from Colombia.

The haul, which is believed to be the largest ever seizure in the UK, was found following a joint investigation between the Metropolitan Police and the NCA.

Armed police raided an industrial estate in Tottenham, London, on Thursday 18 February and found 41 pallets stacked with boxes of bananas - they arrested 10 men, aged between 21 and 56.

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The cocaine had already been removed by Border Force officers at Portsmouth International Port the Sunday before.

The cocaine had arrived on a cargo ship from Colombia and was 'masquerading as a legitimate consignment of bananas'.

John Coles, head of specialist operations at the NCA, said: "The NCA is focused on disrupting the organised crime groups posing the most significant risk to the UK, which includes those involved in class A drug supply.

Credit: NCA
Credit: NCA
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"Illegal drugs are a corrosive threat and those who deal in cocaine are often violent and exploitative. Cocaine supply is directly linked to the use of firearms, knife crime and the exploitation of young and vulnerable people.

"We work closely with domestic and international partners to target those at the top of the chain and ensure that transnational drug networks are met with a global response.

"Border Force is a key partner and were vital in preventing these drugs from being successfully trafficked into the country."

Featured Image Credit: National Crime Agency

Topics: UK News, crime, Drugs

Claire Reid
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