Aruban Authorities Seize 5 Tons of Cocaine From Vessel and Arrest Crew Off Venezuela

February 26: Authorities in the Dutch Caribbean island of Aruba have seized five tons of cocaine from on board a cargo ship destined for Greece and arrested several Montenegrin crew members for narcotics trafficking, media reported.

Montenegro’s Police Directorate on Wednesday said that the arrest was part of a months-long international action initiated by Montenegrin, Serbian, Dutch and British law enforcement.

“The arrested Montenegrin nationals were the crew members. It is suspected that the ship carrying cocaine was to have smuggled it to a port in Western Europe,” police said.

The cargo ship, ARESSA (IMO #7612498), sailed from Suriname in early February, docked at Guaranao, Venezuela and was heading for Thessaloniki in Greece.

Montenegrin media reported that the ship was sailing under the Cameroonian flag when it was intercepted in international waters off Colombia’s neighbour, Venezuela.

“This investigation shows that only through continuous joint work police can obtain quality results in stopping international drug trafficking,” Montenegrin police said.

The seizure came after North Macedonian police on February 20 seized a kilo of cocaine that had entered the country, also as part of a wider international drug-busting operation. The seized cocaine had entered North Macedonia from neighbouring Albania and been transported in a truck driven by a Montenegrin driver.

Source / Read More: Balkan Insight / Samir Kajosevic

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