(NCA/Metropolitan Police)

Ten Arrests as One of the U.K.’s Largest Cocaine Hauls is Found in Consignment of Bananas

Ten people have been arrested in North London in relation to the seizure of approximately 2.3 tonnes of cocaine imported to the U.K. in a consignment of bananas.

The seizure – believed to be one of the largest ever in the U.K. – was part of an investigation led by the joint National Crime Agency and Metropolitan Police Service’s Organised Crime Partnership (OCP).

Those arrested, all men aged 21-56, were detained by OCP officers on February 18 at two addresses in North London after taking delivery of 41 pallets into which the cocaine had been loaded.

The drugs – potentially worth £184 million had it been sold on U.K. streets – had already been removed by Border Force officers at Portsmouth International Port on February 14. The container had arrived on a cargo ship from Colombia the day before, and was masquerading as a legitimate consignment of bananas.

The pallets were delivered to an industrial estate in Tottenham, North London, where OCP officers – supported by armed units from the NCA and the MPS – moved in to arrest the five recipients. The other five men were arrested at a different industrial estate in Enfield. All ten remain in custody and three have since been charged with the importation of class A drugs.

Read more at the National Crime Agency

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