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Border Force officers have seized approximately 63 kilos of cocaine found in a lorry stopped at Dover.
The drugs, once cut and sold on the streets, have a potential value running into millions of pounds.
The drugs were discovered on Monday 13 January when officers stopped and searched a Swiss lorry and its load of plastics. The cocaine was found in a number of bags in the vehicle’s cab.
Two 53-year-old Italian men, Santo Virgadaula the lorry driver and Giambattista Rovillo a passenger in the vehicle, appeared at Folkestone Magistrates Court yesterday, Tuesday 14 January, charged with the importation.
They both withheld their pleas and were remanded in custody. They will next appear at Canterbury Crown Court on 3 February.
The case has been passed to the National Crime Agency for further investigation.
Paul Morgan, Director of Border Force South East and Europe said:
This was a significant seizure of an extremely harmful drug and demonstrates how Border Force officers at Dover are at the forefront of the fight to keep illegal drugs and other banned substances out of the UK.
We will continue to work hard to keep our borders safe and crack down on drug smuggling.
Anyone with information about activity they suspect may be linked to smuggling should call the smuggling Hotline on 0800 59 5000.
(Photo above by Ken Yonekura on Flickr. Used under Creative Commons ).
Published: 15 January 2014
From: Border Force