Five people arrested after cocaine worth £190 million found on yacht

Picture: National Crime Agency

Five people has been arrested after 2.3 tonnes of cocaine – worth £190 million – was found on a yacht at sea.

A team from the National Crime Agency (NCA) carried out a raid on a house in Hartlepool, County Durham.

Officers battered down a door before flooding into the premises.

Four men aged between 28 and 57 and a woman aged 53 were held on suspicion of conspiracy to supply Class A drugs and money laundering.

A fifth man was arrested on suspicion of growing cannabis.

More than £30,000 in cash was also found at the address.

Gavin Heckles, of the NCA, said:

“The National Crime Agency is working with domestic and international partners to investigate this organised crime group from top to bottom.

“Class A drugs wreck lives and can devastate communities – fighting their importation and distribution through the UK is a priority for us.”

Six men, including one Briton and five Nicaraguans, had earlier been charged with drugs’ trafficking after a yacht was boarded and seized by Border Force.

The Kahu – a Jamaican-flagged vessel – had sailed from the Caribbean.

She was stopped 80 miles off the Plymouth coats in a joint operation with Australian police officers.

Cocaine weighing was 2.3 tonnes – worth £190m on the streets – was found.

Chief Inspector Rachel Stockdale, of Cleveland, said:

“Drugs cause misery in our communities and we work with partners to target the organised criminals profiting from this trade.

“We’d encourage anyone concerned about drugs activity to speak to the police, your local information, however small, could be crucial to ongoing investigations.”


About the Author

Philip Braund spent 16 years at the Daily Mirror as a reporter and news editor before moving to ITV. He was the series producer of the ground-breaking investigation programme The Cook Report, Managing Editor at ITV's Millbank Studios, and Head of News at ITV Central. He has won national and regional Royal Television Society awards for documentaries.

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