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Customs recovers two tonnes of cannabis worth £9m off east side

Customs officers recovered two tonnes of cannabis resin worth £9m from the sea.

The bales were recovered after officers on board HMCV Tango 4 spotted four suspicious packages floating in the sea off the east side on May 20.

On closer inspection, the officers established they were cannabis bales.

Two more vessels were deployed, HMCV Seeker and HMCV Tango 1, and a “coordinated, precise operation” was conducted to retrieve any further bales in the area.

A total of 53 bales of drugs were recovered from the area.

“While specific details cannot be disclosed at this time due to the ongoing investigation, a preliminary assessment sets the full amount of narcotics seized at approximately two tonnes with an estimated street value of around 9 million pounds sterling,” HM Customs said in a statement.

The Collector of Customs, John Payas, said: "HM Customs remains committed to tackling drug trafficking networks both at an international and regional level, and preventing the importation of illegal substances into our jurisdiction.”

“This represents a significant seizure of drugs and underscores the effectiveness of HMC’s ability to curtail illicit drugs trafficking through Gibraltar’s waters and serves as a stark reminder to organized criminal groups that their activities will not go unchecked."

The Chief Minister, Fabian Picardo, added: ‘HM Customs Officers work tirelessly to keep drugs off Gibraltar’s streets and I’d like to take this opportunity to thank and congratulate them on this interception, which is just one example of the tangible impact of their stellar efforts on our community.”

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