Marine Link
Tuesday, June 25, 2024

Royal Navy Seizes Over $250M Worth of Drugs in Caribbean Sea

Maritime Activity Reports, Inc.

May 6, 2024

(Credit: Royal Navy)

(Credit: Royal Navy)

The crew of U.K. Royal Navy’s offshore patrol vessel HMS Trent has seized over $250 million worth of cocaine in the latest drugs bust in the Caribbean Sea, bringing the total drugs seized by the vessel so far to over $640 million.

The latest bust came after HMS Trent was alerted to potential smugglers by a United States maritime patrol aircraft and used her powerful radars to track down the suspicious vessel.

With the Royal Navy ship closing in, the vessel started throwing bales of cocaine into the sea to try and evade capture.

The crew of HMS Trent then had to recover the drugs thrown overboard, and the extensive search operation ran throughout the night, with the crew eventually recovering more than more than 2.5 tonnes of cocaine.

“I’d like to congratulate the crew of HMS Trent for this latest bust, but also for their incredible work over the previous 5 months, seizing large amounts of drugs and disrupting global drug networks.

“The Royal Navy continue to show that those who seek to profit from illegal drugs face the full force of justice, wherever they are in the world,” said Grant Shapps, U.K.’s Defense Secretary.

Following a double bust earlier in the year, where nearly $380 million of narcotics were seized, HMS Trent has given a decisive blow to drug networks across globe.

Trent has been deployed in the Caribbean Sea since December, specifically to hunt drug smugglers, maintain maritime security and uphold international law in the region.

Working with multinational partners, across five months of operations, the ship has seized 6,390kg of drugs with a street value of around $640 million.  

“The combined capabilities of the ship, the embarked U.S. Coast Guard Law Enforcement Detachment and our 47 Commando coxswains have proven once again the utility of our ship in countering narcotics smuggling.

“Working seamlessly to complete another covert take down, Trent and her crew continue to achieve unparalleled success in intercepting traffickers,” added Tim Langford, Trent’s Commanding Officer.

Alongside their success in the Caribbean, the Royal Navy has simultaneously been disrupting criminal gangs halfway across the world, with HMS Lancaster seizing $41 million worth of drugs in the Gulf earlier this year, highlighting the fleet’s ability to operate in multiple theatres.