Boat Chase Leads to Biggest Cocaine Seizure 'of the Year'

Value of shipment seized off Colombian island estimated at $113M
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 27, 2024 2:55 PM CDT

A high-speed boat chase ended with Colombia's "largest cocaine shipment seizure of the year," per CBS News. The Colombian navy and air force worked with the US Southern Command's Joint Interagency Task Force to chase down the speedboat found to hold nearly 4 tons of cocaine, valued at more than $113 million. Colombian authorities released video footage of the chase, showing planes and vessels in hot pursuit of the speedboat, whose crew reportedly "began evasive actions, throwing packages into the water," per CBS. The boat was finally overtaken near San Andres island, nearly 500 miles northwest of the Colombian mainland.

The boat's shipment had been covered by a blue tarp. Once authorities boarded the vessel, they found about 3.7 tons of cocaine, equal to more than eight million doses, officials said. The boat was seized as well as the drugs. Its crew members—three Colombians, one Honduran, and one Venezuelan—were arrested. Such drug busts are common in Colombia, where groups are said to produce up to 80% of the world's cocaine. On Monday, Colombia's National Police said authorities had seized 1.7 tons of cocaine concealed in a shipment of avocados at the port of Santa Marta on Colombia's northern coast, per USA Today. The shipment was reportedly bound for Portugal. (More Colombia stories.)

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