The U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) assisted in the seizure of nearly eight metric tons of cocaine near Latin America – considered one of the largest drug busts in history.
Several drug enforcement agencies intercepted 7.9 tons of cocaine in two separate law actions on or near May 11, El Comercio reported.
In the first bust, Spanish authorities working in conjunction with Ecuadorian police intercepted a ship off Ecuador’s coast that contained 5.5 tons of cocaine. Officials said the cargo came from Colombia and was destined to travel through the Panama Canal toward Europe.
The second bust happened near Martinica when Spanish police flagged a Venezuelan fishing vessel for inspection. A search of the boat revealed another 2.5 tons of coke.
Fox News reported that the 5.5 tons of seized cocaine off the coast of Ecuador had an estimated value of $250 million – $45.45 million per ton – which when applied to the total 7.9-ton seizure of cocaine equates to a value of $359.1 million.
The DEA and Britain’s National Crime Agency assisted in the operation which resulted in the arrests of 31 suspected drug traffickers.
“It is one of the largest cocaine seizures in history and it takes apart a large drug-trafficking organization between South America and Spain,” Spain’s Interior Minister Juan Ignocio Zoido said.
Breitbart Texas reported on May 10 that Colombia is producing more cocaine than at any other time in the nation’s history. According to estimates, Colombia produced 710 tons of cocaine in 2016, compared to 235 in 2013.
The boom in cocaine production comes as a result of a peace accord between the Colombian government and the far-left Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC), which ended a 52-year long war with the FARC agreeing to stop drug trafficking.
On Sunday, Breitbart Texas reported that U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) are seeing a surge in narcotics activity at the U.S.-Mexico Border even though illegal immigration has plummeted. Officials stated that they had seen an increase of 177 percent in heroin seizures and an increase of 129 percent in cocaine.
Ryan Saavedra is a contributor for Breitbart Texas and can be found on Twitter at @RealSaavedra.