Drug traffickers warned after £2m cocaine haul found at Port of Hull
DRUG traffickers are being warned the Port of Hull is no soft target and that they face lengthy prison terms after cocaine worth up to £2m was seized by officials.
Border Force officers found around 34kg of the Class A drug in a lorry, which had arrived at the port on a ferry from Rotterdam on Sunday morning.
Sam Bullimore, of the Government's anti-smuggling agency, said: "By thwarting this smuggling attempt, we have stopped a sizeable amount of cocaine making it on to the streets of Britain.
"Seizures like this demonstrate how Border Force officers are at the forefront of the fight to keep illegal drugs and other banned substances out of the UK.
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"Drug trafficking is a serious offence and those convicted face long prison sentences."
Mr Bullimore said officers in Hull have access to an array of sophisticated equipment designed to detect drugs and those wishing to enter Britain illegally.
Border Force officers use high-tech search equipment to combat immigration crime and detect banned and restricted goods that smugglers attempt to bring into the country.
Mr Bullimore said: "They use an array of search techniques, including sniffer dogs, carbon dioxide detectors, heartbeat monitors and scanners, as well as visual searches, to find well-hidden stowaways, illegal drugs, firearms and cigarettes, which would otherwise end up causing harm to people, businesses and communities.
Last weekend's seizure was the latest in a string of major finds. On February 7, Border Force foiled an attempt to smuggle about seven million cigarettes through the Port of Hull.
Officers selected a tank container that had been shipped from Saint Petersburg, in Russia, for closer inspection.
An X-ray and subsequent physical search revealed the 20ft tanker, which would normally have been carrying fuel, was in fact filled with hessian sacks stuffed with cigarettes.
If the haul had not been intercepted, it could have cost the treasury about £1.75m in lost excise duty.
Anyone with information about activity they suspect may be linked to smuggling is asked to call the Customs Hotline on 0800 595 000.
In respect to last weekend's cocaine find, a 43-year-old Hungarian man has been arrested on suspicion of illegally importing a Class A drug.
He has been bailed while investigations continue.