Police seize more than 50,000 lbs. of cocaine in Europe's largest bust ever

Police seize more than 50,000 lbs. of cocaine in Europe's largest bust ever
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European authorities on Wednesday seized more than 50,000 pounds of cocaine worth billions of euros, calling it the largest such bust the continent has ever seen.

CNN reported that authorities in Germany and Belgium made the seizure in an operation that lasted more than a week and resulted in the arrest of one man from the Netherlands.

German Customs Investigation chief Rene Matschke told CNN that authorities in Hamburg opened three containers that were listed as containing construction putty, working off a tip from Dutch colleagues.


Though construction putty was in fact found inside the containers, so were packages of cocaine.

According to Matschke, it was “pretty disgusting to separate the cocaine from the putty as it is so sticky."

CNN reports that 35,658 pounds of cocaine was found inside the construction putty containers.

The seizure in Hamburg led authorities to another shipment of 11 containers on their way to Antwerp from Panama. Belgian authorities found another 15,873 pounds of cocaine in the Panamanian shipment.

These seizures amount to not only the largest amount of drugs intercepted by authorities in Europe, but possibly one of the largest seizures in the world, according to CNN.

"We have succeeded in seizing a record amount of cocaine. With this blow against organized narcotics crime — also thanks to the exemplary cooperation with European partner authorities — German Customs has once again impressively demonstrated its clout. Our strategy of continuing to massively strengthen customs is working," said Rolf Bösinger, German state secretary at the Federal Ministry of Finance.