Police seize 1000kg cocaine haul in Westerschelde estuary

The Westerschelde at Rilland, Zeeland. Photo: Wikipedia

Police have seized a haul of nearly 1,000kg of cocaine that was transported up the Westerschelde estuary in Zeeland.

Customs officers tracked a small boat that was seen pulling up alongside a ship before travelling up the estuary towards Rilland, where it was abandoned, the prosecution service said.

A search of the area uncovered packages of cocaine weighing a total of 980kg, with an estimated street value of €73.5 million.

The boat was found abandoned on mudflats in the Verdronken Land van Saeftinghe, on the Zeeuws-Vlaanderen side of the estuary. The coastguard searched the water for potential casualties but found no sign of the crew.

Harbour police have begun an investigation, in collaboration with the border force (Marechaussee), customs and the police water division. The cocaine has been destroyed.

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