More than two tons of cocaine wrapped in bags have been found on the northern coast of France since Sunday, with an estimated value of almost 150 million eurosaccording to a source close to the case reported this Thursday.
Several bags with about 850 kg of cocaine were found on Sunday on the beach of Révillein the north-west of France.
On Wednesday, another six bags were found about 15 kilometers further north, on the shore of the town of Vicq-sur-Mer. According to a source close to the case, who confirmed information from a local newspaper, they contained 1.5 tons of the white powder.
In total, 2.3 tons of cocaine were found since Sundaya “historic” figure, added the source.
The Cherbourg prosecutor’s office opened an investigation at the beginning of the week, which will try to shed light on the origin and trajectory of the bags.
The cocaine packages could have been thrown into the sea on purpose to avoid control, although there is also the possibility that they fell from the ship, explained a source close to the case.
Another source added that in some cases, the bags are tied to the hull of the boat and can be unhooked by the state of the sea.
The maritime prefecture announced that new aircraft and maritime patrols were deployed to control the area.
It is not the first time that cocaine has been found on French beaches.
At the end of 2019, 1,600 kg of this drug was found in bags scattered on beaches between the towns of San Juan de Luz (southwest) and Camaret (northwest).
21 kg of cocaine were also found in May 2022 on a Berck beach in the north of the country.
On Wednesday, the French Minister of Public Accounts, gabriel attalannounced that the authorities seized 1,900 kilos of cocaine on February 19 in the port of Le Havre, also in the north.
“We must prevent this white tsunami from reaching our shores”he said at the time.
Yves Asseline, mayor of the town of Réville, went to the scene once all the bags had been collected. There, he verified that they were designed to float with life jackets. According to him, the bags are well sealed and made to stay in the water for a long time. The official stated that this could be the work of smugglers who deliberately dragged the cargo, perhaps during a check, to retrieve it later.
In 2022, France seized around 156.7 tons of drugs, a “historic” level, including 27 tons of cocaine, authorities announced Wednesday.
(With information from AFP)
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