£35 million cocaine shipment seized at Eastbourne docks

Met officers have seized 350kg of cocaine on board a small boat in an operation supported by the National Crime Agency and Border Force.

The vessel, a Kingfisher Sports Explorer, was seized and 350kg of cocaine found on board. The drugs have an estimated street value of £35 million.

Detectives from Scotland Yard deployed to Eastbourne, Sussex on Saturday, 18 February where they intercepted a small boat as it moored in the harbour at approximately 22:15hrs.

The operation took place after officers received intelligence on the boat’s suspicious movements in the Channel.

Three men were arrested, charged and remanded for conspiracy to import Class A drugs.


Detective Inspector Lydia Stephens from the Met’s Specialist Crime Command, said:“We are committed to tackling the impact of Class A drugs on our communities.

“This huge, clearly significant shipment was destined for the streets of London via ‘city lines’ drugs gangs, 80 per cent of whom have a history of violence including links to murder. Targeting them will help safeguard children exploited by them and drive down serious violence in the capital.

“I’d like to thank colleagues from the National Crime Agency and Border Force for their assistance in this fast-time operation.”

Martin French, senior intelligence manager, at the National Crime Agency, said:“The NCA brought a number of specialist capabilities to this investigation which helped secure the seizure of these Class A drugs. The loss of this cocaine means it will not contribute to the misery and chaos that the Class A drugs market causes in our communities.

“Working with partners such as the Metropolitan Police and Border Force, the NCA will continue to protect the public by working at home and abroad to combat serious organised crime threats to the UK.”

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