The largest cocaine bust in the Netherlands was made by customs officials in Rotterdam, who seized more than 8,000 kilograms (17,600 pounds) of the narcotic, according to prosecutors on Thursday.
The drugs were estimated to have a street value of 600 million euros ($662 million), according to a statement from the Rotterdam Public Prosecution Service.
The revelation, which was kept under wraps due to the continuing investigation, has not yet resulted in any arrests.
The drugs, which have been destroyed, were allegedly found on July 13 concealed within a container of Ecuadorian bananas.
The declaration was made the day after the fatal shooting at a political event of a presidential candidate known for speaking out against drug gangs and corruption in the South American nation.
According to the European Union organization that monitors drugs and addiction, the lucrative drug trade in Europe is also a major contributor to the continent’s violence and corruption.
It claimed that 303 tons of cocaine were captured by EU member states in 2021, marking record-breaking seizures in Europe. According to the report, the main entry points for cocaine from Latin America into Europe are Rotterdam and the Belgian port of Antwerp.
The EU has seen an increase in corruption and violence as the cocaine market has grown, with the tight competition among traffickers fueling an increase in murders and intimidation.
A lawyer who was defending a witness in the prosecution of an alleged drug gangster and crime reporter Peter R. were among the casualties in the Netherlands in recent years. de Vries, a trusted friend of the witness. Princess Amalia, the Dutch heir apparent, had to leave her student housing in Amsterdam last year due to unidentified threats, so she continued her studies from home.
As competing gangs fight for power in Ecuador, drug traffickers have started to use the nation’s coastal ports, causing a surge of violence that hasn’t been witnessed in years.
The port city of Manta’s mayor was shot and assassinated last month. President Guillermo Lasso proclaimed a state of emergency for two regions and the nation on July 26.