A sailboat was intercepted in waters west of the Canary Islands that was transporting 200 kilos of cocaine

The Customs Surveillance Service of the Tax Agency, the Spanish National Police and the Civil Guard, in a joint operation, intercepted, on February 21, 500 miles from the Canary Islands, a sailboat named ‘Assashio’, with eleven meters of length and Venezuelan flag, which was carrying around 200 kilos of cocaine, in the absence of official weighing, divided into eight bales.

After the boarding by the Customs Surveillance patrol boat ‘Petrel’, the sole crew member, of Portuguese nationality, was arrested, transferring the load to the patrol boat, given the state of deterioration of the sailboat that caused its subsequent sinking.

The narcotic substance was distributed throughout the interior of the boat without any type of concealment, something logical given its small dimensions.

The operation has been the result of international collaboration thanks to intelligence from the French Customs Services (DNRED) and the US DEA, channeled through the Center for Analysis against Maritime Drug Trafficking in the Atlantic (MAOC) and coordinated by the Intelligence Center for Terrorism and Organized Crime (CITCO). The operation has culminated with the arrival of the ‘Petrel’ today at the port of Vigo, for the unloading of the drugs and subsequent transfer of the detainee to the National Court by the Civil Guard, Customs Surveillance and National Police. 

Atlantic route

This operation is added to those already carried out by the Tax Agency and the Security Forces in the fight against drug trafficking in the so-called ‘Atlantic Route’ of cocaine, known for being used by fishing vessels, merchant vessels, semi-rigid vessels and, as On this occasion, sailboats from South America and the Caribbean transship the narcotic substances in the middle of the Atlantic for their subsequent introduction to the European continent. The success of this type of action is the result of the excellent collaborative work between several European and national organizations (MAOC, CITCO) and the different police and customs forces, as well as, in this case, the cooperation of the DNRED and the DEA.