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Cocaine worth $4 .5 billion seized in two operations

THE Narcotics Division of the Jamaica Constabulary Force along with the Jamaica Defence Force (JDF) Coast Guard, between Sunday and Tuesday, seized more than 1,200 kilogrammes of cocaine worth approximately $4.5 billion in Kingston and St Thomas respectively.

According to the police, 1,193.2 kg of cocaine was recovered by the coast guard during an anti-narcotic mission about 60 nautical miles south-east of Morant Point, St Thomas about 5:45 am on Tuesday.

According to the police, during the operation members of the coast guard saw a number of bales floating in the water. Further investigation led to the removal of 50 bales that were taken to the Narcotics Police Headquarters in Kingston and processed.

At that time, it was revealed that the parcels contained a white substance resembling cocaine.

No one was arrested.

On Sunday, 44-year-old stevedore Shawn Taylor was arrested and charged after 22.5 pounds of cocaine, valued at approximately $13.3 million, were found in his possession at the Kingston Freeport Terminal Limited (KFTL).

Taylor, who was among four stevedores taken into custody, is scheduled to appear in the Kingston and St Andrew Parish Court on August 7 to answer possession of cocaine, dealing in cocaine and conspiracy to import cocaine charges.

The other three persons were released.

It is reported that approximately 3:15 am the police, accompanied by members of the Jamaica Customs Contraband Enforcement Team, seized approximately 22.5 pounds of a white substance resembling cocaine on a vessel at KFTL.

According to a police report, the vessel had arrived on Saturday from Colombia with containerised cargo.

While the containers were being offloaded by stevedores eight packages of white substance resembling cocaine were found in Taylor’s possession. Further investigation revealed that an additional 10 packages were concealed under the ship’s spare anchor.

According to the police, both drug seizures are the result of the continued fight against the illicit trade in guns, drugs and human trafficking in Jamaica’s territorial waters.