Federal agents conducted a massive drug bust this week, seizing about 16.5 tons of cocaine found aboard a cargo ship at the Packer Avenue Marine Terminal Port in Philadelphia. Law enforcement say the drugs have an estimated street value of more than $1 billion, marking the largest drug seizure in the history of the Eastern District of Pennsylvania.
According to NBC 10 Philadelphia, agents found the drug shipment concealed inside seven containers on the MSC Gayane, a vessel that previously traveled from Chile, Panama, and the Bahamas. It was scheduled to travel to European ports, including stops in France and the Netherlands, after Philadelphia.
Members of the ship’s crew have reportedly been arrested and charged with federal drug trafficking. The confiscated cocaine has been transported to an undisclosed facility for further analysis.
Officials said an investigation is ongoing. Customs and Border Patrol, the Department of Homeland Security, as well as Immigration and Customs Enforcement are assisting the probe.
Pennsylvania Senator Bob Casey applauded the agents who conducted Tuesday’s bust, while also questioning the effectiveness of Donald Trump’s proposed border wall. “This seizure is further evidence that a border wall will not stop drugs from ‘pouring into the country’ as the president has previously claimed,” he tweeted, “and points to the vulnerability the administration has created by reassigning border protection officers from already understaffed Ports to the southern border.”
The bust took place more than three months after law enforcement seized 450 bricks of cocaine—worth an estimated $38 million—at the Port of Philadelphia. No arrests were made during that raid.
source: complex.com BYJOSHUA ESPINOZA