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£40m worth of heroin seized from ship in Felixstowe

What's been described as one of the biggest ever seizures of heroin in the UK has been made from a ship docked at Felixstowe.

Almost 400 kilos of the drug was removed from a container on the ship by Border Force and National Crime Agency Officers.

The NCA had intelligence that a container vessel suspected of carrying a large shipment of drugs was en route to Antwerp in Belgium.

It docked in Felixstowe on 1st August, and officers from Border Force and the NCA removed a container in which approximately 398 kilograms of heroin was concealed within a cover load of towels and bathrobes.

The container was then put back in the ship, which sailed on to Antwerp.

On arrival, the container was collected by lorry and taken to Rotterdam – all the time under police surveillance.

On 5 August, as suspects took steps to unload the contents, Dutch Police moved in and made two arrests. 

The NCA simultaneously arrested a man from Bromsgrove who is currently being questioned by NCA officers.

The drugs would be worth at least £9m to organised criminals selling the whole consignment at wholesale, and at least £40m at street level in the UK and other European countries.

NCA regional Operations Manager, Colin Williams, said, “The seizure of such a large quantity of heroin is the result of a targeted, intelligence-led investigation, carried out by the NCA with international and UK partners.

“It is almost certain that some of these drugs would have been sold in the UK, fuelling violence and exploitation including what we see in county lines offending nationwide. 

“The heroin trade also feeds addictions that put users’ lives at risk, while giving rise to crime such as theft which make people feel unsafe in their communities."

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