The Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) and the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) announced the seizure of suspected cocaine from a commercial vessel in British Columbia (BC).
On June 2, 2020, the commercial vessel arrived in Canada at Constance Bank Anchorage near Victoria, BC. Officers from the CBSA Vancouver Island Mobile Enforcement Team (MET), CBSA Victoria Marine Operations, and the CBSA Pacific Region Intelligence Section boarded the vessel to perform an examination.
CBSA officers located 11 individually wrapped packages in the ship’s engine room. A field test of the contents identified the white substance as suspected cocaine. A total of 16.84 kilograms of suspected cocaine were seized.
On June 3, 2020, the CBSA Vancouver Island MET continued examining the vessel in collaboration with the RCMP Vancouver Island Dive Team.
The RCMP Vancouver Island Dive Team conducted a comprehensive dive operation under the waterline of the vessel. Evidence of tampering was found, suggesting that there likely had been more drugs on that ship and was retrieved underwater sometime before law enforcement’s intervention. No further narcotics were discovered onboard.
The ship was conducting legitimate business, travelling between South America, Europe, the Caribbean and the United States, before arriving in BC waters. A team from the RCMP Shiprider Program attended and took charge of the criminal investigation. No arrests were made or charges laid.
The estimated value of 16.84 kilograms of cocaine is $875,000.