The Malta Independent 15 July 2024, Monday
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Customs Department officers find €13m worth of cannabis concealed in industrial ovens

Monday, 24 June 2024, 08:18 Last update: about 20 days ago

Customs Department officers have discovered €13 million worth of cannabis resin concealed within industrial ovens in a container at the Malta Freeport Terminal, the Ministry of Finance said in a statement on Monday.

Following a risk assessment, the officials had decided that the container, originating from Morocco and bound for Tripoli in Libya, should be scanned and thoroughly examined.

The first scan of the six induction ovens in the container showed significant inconsistencies, and further scans left no doubt that irregular material was concealed in the ovens, the statament said.

Getting to the drugs was a complex process, which took over two days to conclude, and involved the Customs canine teams, a team from the Police narcotics squad and members from the Civil Protection Department.

Once the panels had been dismantled, 4,300 kgs of cannabis resin were found embedded in the inner parts of the induction ovens, a remarkable find not only because the quantity was considerable – even on an international scale – but also because the structures were ingeniously built to distract and mislead the authorities.

This was not the only recent drugs find: last week Customs intercepted 50 kgs of cocaine from a container which arrived from Ecuador with final destination Slovenia, the statement said.

Duty magistrates were informed of the two cases and inquiries were appointed.

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