R1.3bn worth of cocaine confiscated from ship at Durban port

Suthentira Govender Senior reporter
The ship carrying the cocaine.
The ship carrying the cocaine.
Image: Sars

A total of 300kg of pure cocaine, with an estimated value of R1.3bn, was found on a ship at the Durban harbour on Friday.

The South African Revenue Service (Sars) said its custom officers and police carried out an early morning raid on the ship.

"The pure cocaine was detected after a week-long intelligence-driven operation.

"The Sars marine unit, Durban Operations, police Crime Intelligence and National Detective Services boarded the vessel heading from South America to secure several containers profiled by Sars.

"The containers were inspected after they were offloaded in Durban harbour. The inspection revealed zinc metal products and several black bags containing 378 bricks of pure cocaine.

The confiscated drugs.
The confiscated drugs.
Image: Sars

"The illicit cargo and what appears to be cellular tracking devices were handed to police for further investigation."

Sars commissioner Edward Kieswetter praised enforcement agencies involved in the operation.

“By working together, government has shown again it is determined to fight the scourge of narcotics entering the country and destroying the lives of its users, especially the youth.”


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