Senegalese navy seizes nearly 3 tonnes of cocaine from ship

DAKAR (Reuters) – A Senegalese navy patrol boat has seized nearly 3 tonnes of pure cocaine from a vessel it intercepted 150 km (93.21 miles) off the coast on Tuesday, the navy said in statement.

It said the boat and its cargo had been escorted to the Admiral Faye Gassama Naval Base in the capital Dakar and handed over to the relevant authorities.

It did not provide any further details.

Photos posted by the navy on social media platform X showed a rusty-hulled ship called the Ville d’Abidjan at dock, dozens of suitcase-sized bundles wrapped in colourful plastic, and police officers examining a white substance apparently extracted from the haul.

Drug smugglers often use West African countries as a transit point to ship cocaine from South America to Europe.

Coca bush cultivation and total cocaine production hit record highs in 2021, the most recent year for which data is available, and the global number of cocaine users, estimated at 22 million that same year, is growing steadily, the U.N. Office on Drugs and Crime said in its annual World Drug Report in June.

(Reporting by Alessandra Prentice; Editing by Sandra Maler)