UK impounds 500g of cocaine shipped from Nigeria

Rift between Customs, PIA intensifies over $1.6m smuggled heroin
Illustrative picture.


Border officials in the United Kingdom said they have seized 500grams of cocaine shipped from Nigeria that was headed for India.

The internationally coordinated effort, which lasted from September 14 to October 11, led to 178 seizures across the globe.

UK Customs officials also said that 174,400 sildenafil tablets entered the UK from India.

Drugs were not the only items seized. Animal skin, live reptiles and elephant tusks were part of the confiscated products.

Britain’s Minister for Immigration Compliance and the Courts, Chris Philp, said, “Organised crime groups drive the trade in endangered species and the movement of banned animal products is key to how they operate.

“This is why Border Force’s specialist officers will continue their vital work at the border to prevent the importation and exportation of endangered animals and plants, as well as working alongside enforcement partners such as the National Wildlife Crime Unit, and police from across the UK to eradicate this ruthless and exploitative trade.”

The operation was co-led by the World Customs Organisation and Interpol, Hindustan Times reports.

It also involved police, customs, environment, wildlife and forestry agencies from 111 countries.

Aside from the drugs, the contraband items impounded included 1.3 tonnes of ivory, more than one tonne of Pangolin scales, 1,400 live turtles and 1,800 reptiles.

The news outlet reports that the seizure of sildenafil tablets from India meant to treat erectile dysfunction (ED) is the second such major UK seizure in two years.

The Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency seized 3.5 million such pills worth £10 million in 2019, 96 per cent of them were shipped from India.

ED pills are available through pharmacies on a doctor’s prescription after an assessment.

Illegal traders posing as legitimate suppliers sell unlicensed medications for the UK market online, offering attractive prices, officials said.

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