29 November 2023,   10:22
Ireland in record USD 166 million cocaine seizure after naval operation

Irish rangers made the country’s biggest ever drugs seizure after a naval operation involving warning shots being fired at a Panamanian cargo vessel which had refused to follow instructions, authorities said, writes Reuters.

The seizure of 2,253 kg of cocaine worth an estimated 157 million euros came after members of the army ranger wing boarded the vessel off the country’s southeast coast using ropes dropped from a helicopter in high winds.

The vessel was registered in Panama and originated in South America and the product was supplied by “one of the murderous South American cartels behind cocaine shipments to Europe”, said Justin Kelly, assistant police commissioner for organised crime.

Three men aged 60, 50 and 31 have been arrested on suspicion of organised crime offences and Kelly said there may be further arrests. The bulk cargo vessel had a crew of 25.