Royal Navy task group seizes £160 million in drugs in Caribbean

RFA Argus (Photo: Royal Navy)

A Royal Navy task group has prevented drugs worth more than £160 million (US$207 million) from potentially reaching the UK following two recent successful operations in the Caribbean.

The Royal Fleet Auxiliary ship RFA Argus, alongside its helicopter crews, Royal Marines, and US Coast Guard teams, worked with the Royal Netherlands Navy ship HNLMS Groningen to seize 1.7 tonnes of cocaine and 28 kilograms of amphetamines.

The bust was the second in two days following the seizure of 264 kilograms of cocaine in a separate operation in the region just 48 hours before.

The first of the two recent busts came when two suspicious vessels were spotted near Argus and Groningen.

Argus launched one of its helicopters with a Royal Marine sniper team on board. Using advanced sensors and cameras, the helicopter team stopped the suspect vessels before a team made up of Royal Marines, US Coast Guard personnel, and sailors from Groningen boarded the vessels to undertake the search.

Just two days later, Argus was conducting routine training when one of its helicopters spotted a suspicious craft.

The 28,000-tonne vessel changed course to give chase and the helicopters worked with Groningen to allow the US Coast Guard personnel to intercept the suspect craft.

The Royal Navy Caribbean task group has now prevented nearly a quarter of a billion pounds worth of drugs reaching the UK after three separate busts also took place last month.

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