Cocaine with Â£9million street value seized at Port of Tyne
Cocaine with an estimated street value of Â£9million has been seized at the Port of Tyne.
Border Force officers uncovered around 115 kilos of the drug at the port's International Passenger Terminal after a Polish-registered lorry which had arrived on a ferry from Amsterdam was stopped.
The drugs were found in the trailer and tested positive to a field test for cocaine. They will now be sent for forensic analysis to determine the purity.
Liz Versi, Director of Border Force North said: "It is the job of Border Force to stay one step ahead of the smugglers who would look to bring dangerous drugs like this into the country.
"This was a significant seizure by Border Force officers, who have prevented a large amount of dangerous Class A drugs from ending up on the streets of the UK.
"Every year Border Force officers seize Class A drugs worth hundreds of million of pounds. Working with law enforcement colleagues like the National Crime Agency (NCA) we are determined to prevent drug trafficking."
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Andy Etherington. NCA Operations Manager, said: "The National Crime Agency working with our colleagues at Border Force are committed 24/7 to protecting our borders and those whothink that the North East Ports are a weak point to be taken advantage of should think again.
"Anyone who tries to exploit our borders by attempting to smuggle drugs from abroad will be brought to justice.
"Cocaine destined to be sold here in the UK by gangs will not now reach our streets. We are committed to keeping illegal substances and the harm they bring to communities out of the country."
The discovery was made on Friday, October 19. Rafal Chyl, 27, a Polish man of no fixed UK address, has been charged with importing a Class A drug and will appear at Newcastle Crown Court on November 22.