Dominican Republic Seizes More than 2 Tons of Cocaine
By Lorena Baires/Diálogo December 18, 2020
A counternarcotics team of the Dominican National Drug Control Directorate (DNCD, in Spanish) and the Dominican Armed Forces seized more than 2 tons of cocaine in two operations.
On November 7, troops of the Navy and the DNCD intercepted an artisanal vessel that was carrying 231 packages of cocaine off the coast of Azua province. The packages weighed about 238 kilograms. Authorities detained six crew members, one of whom was Venezuelan.
During another operation on November 1, at Haina Oriental Port, Santo Domingo Oeste municipality, service members seized 1,747 packages of cocaine. The drug was distributed among several containers on a vessel coming from Colombia.
“The shipment weighed a total of 1,782 kg […], and its final destination was Rotterdam, the Netherlands,” Carlos Devers, DNCD spokesperson, told Diálogo. “This is the largest cargo seized [so far in 2020] and the largest in this port’s history.”
The drug was inside waterproof bags, in cardboard boxes that pretended to carry kitchen appliances, service members told the press on November 1.
The DNCD confirmed that it has intensified operations with the armed forces at airports, ports, and borders, which has facilitated the fight against international narcotrafficking. “The armed forces’ support, with Navy speedboats, Air Force aircraft, and Army ground operational readiness, has favored a faster, more efficient response against narcotrafficking and related crimes,” Devers added.
From January to October 2020, authorities seized more than 6.5 tons of drugs; 86 percent was cocaine, and the rest was marijuana, ecstasy, and other controlled substances, the DNCD said.