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Two sailboats loaded with more than 1,100 kilos of cocaine intercepted in the waters west of the Canary Islands

Operation of the Tax Agency, Civil Guard and National Police

  • The two vessels have been dealt with by the Customs Surveillance Service Special Operations Vessel "Fulmar"

8 March 2023 .- The Tax Agency, as part of a joint operation with Guardia Civil and the National Police, has intercepted a sailboat, named "My Love," in waters west of the Canary Islands, carrying a cocaine load. Following the approach by the Tax Agency's Customs Surveillance Service Special Operations Vessel, the two crew members of the Spanish nationality were arrested.

The crew and the sailboat have been transferred to the port of Tenerife for judicial use. In the framework of another investigation, a second sailboat has been boarded, also with narcotics, so that the amount of the two sailing boats seized is more than 1,100 kilos of cocaine

As part of the surveillance and prevention actions that are usually carried out, and through the international communication system between the MAOCC -N and CITCO receive information from the US DEA, with the collaboration of the British NCA that would indicate that a sailing boat named "My Love" could be close to the position of the "Fulmar" vessel. As a result, the Customs Surveillance Service patrol ship receives instructions to address the vessel in demand, which is located and boarded in the afternoon of 3 March, at around 350 miles from Santa Cruz de Tenerife.

In the vessel "My Love" with the flag of Belgium, it could be seen at a glance that it carried an undetermined number of bundles of the ones usually used for the transport of cocaine. After the Belgian authorities have been authorised, the vessel is boarded, the cocaine seized by the vessel and the arrest of its two crew members, of Spanish nationality. This operation has been directed and coordinated by the Anti-Drug Prosecutor's Office of the National Court and the Central Court of Instruction number 5 of the National Court.

Difficulties in boarding and towing

The circumstance arises that the Vessel "Fulmar" was immersed in another operation, which had previously been operated by a the first sailing boat that carried cocaine, which was being towed to the Canary Islands as part of a joint investigation of the three police forces, an action that continues to be opened.

The conditions of both attacks have been very complicated, due, in the first case, to the situation of the sea, and in the second, the handicap of taking the first operated sailboat to the trailer, which made the manoeuvres much more difficult.

Despite this, the rapid action and experience of the agents of the SVA in operation prevented incidents from taking place and allowed the operation to succeed on one of the few occasions when a double intervention was carried out in the same naval operation.

Both the detainees, as well as the boats, drugs and police proceedings will be made available to the courts. These operations are two more than those carried out by the troops dedicated to the repression of drug trafficking in the so-called "Atlantic Route" of cocaine , known for being used by fish farmers, mercurants and, as in this case, sailing boats from South America that aim to introduce narcotics into the European continent.

Filming of the operation (to download the video, enter the following website address):