Nearly 575 kilogrammes of cocaine were seized in the Ploce Port on March 30, after being delivered by ship in containers with bananas from South America, which is one of the largest operations in Croatian history, the Dubrovnik-Neretva Police Administration said at a press conference on Wednesday. Pročitaj više
The head of the Dubrovnik-Neretva County police department, Ivan Pavlicevic, said no arrests had been made so far and a criminal investigation had started on March 30.
“If you import something, you expect it to be taken, but that didn’t happen. The legal goods were taken, but the illegal ones weren’t, and the container is being returned,” Pavlicevic said.
He said that several tonnes of cocaine from South America had been seized in the ports of Western Europe at the beginning of the year, so it was possible that one branch was redirected to the south of Europe, to Croatia, Greece and Italy.
“We are focusing on critical routes and containers for which there are indications that something might be in them,” said Pavlicevic.
He did not confirm cooperation with the American Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA).
Head of the criminal police, Zoran Tikvica, said that cocaine had not been intended for the Croatian market but for distribution on the illegal market in neighbouring countries.
“Drugs like cocaine are easiest to distribute by container transport, and the Ploce Port is just one of the many cargo ports in Europe and the world, where far larger quantities have been seized,” Tikvica said.
The head of the service for mobile units of the Dubrovnik Customs Administration, Pero Peric, said that the customs and police were intensifying the surveillance of the Ploce Port, and the operation was a result of that surveillance.