Cocaine worth PLN 3 billion hidden in frozen pineapple pulp

The capture of over 3.2 tonnes of cocaine-containing substance, with a black market value of about PLN 3 billion, is a success achieved thanks to the cooperation of the Border Guard, CBŚP and the Gdańsk department of the National Prosecutor’s Office. A huge amount of cocaine, that will now not reach the market, was sent from Ecuador via Hamburg to Poland. The drugs were hidden in a frozen pineapple pulp.
Three people suspected of participating in an organized criminal group were detained in the case.

Investigators from the Maritime Branch of the Border Guard and the Management Board in Olsztyn of the Central Police Investigation Bureau determined that one of the Gdynia warehouses, belonging to a legally operating company, stored 144 metal barrels with a capacity of 250 kilograms to contain frozen pineapple pulp. Goods ordered by one of the companies were imported from Ecuador in the period from November 16 to December 13, 2019, first by sea to the port of Hamburg, then by road to Gdynia.

MOSG and CBŚP officers x-rayed the barrels with an X-ray device, and Border Guard dogs for drug detection indicated some of them as containing drugs. It was decided to keep the goods and appoint an expert in the field of chemistry, who in the opinion indicated that the barrels contained more than 3.2 tons of substances with cocaine. One million commercial portions of the drug with a black market value of at least PLN 334 million can be prepared from this. If the product were to market, its value on the retail market would be ten times higher and would amount to over PLN 3 billion. Due to the method of masking the drug in frozen pineapple pulp, chemical research was conducted using non-standard research methods.

In order to clarify the details of the case, prosecutors from the Pomeranian Department of the Organized Crime Department and the Corruption of the National Prosecutor’s Office in Gdansk initiated an investigation, which was entrusted to conduct two units – police officers from the Management Board in Olsztyn of the Central Police Investigation Bureau and officers of the Maritime Border Guard Department.

The effect of investigative activities was also the detention of three men aged 64 to 71 years, residents of the Pomeranian Voivodeship. According to the findings of officers, cocaine came from Ecuador to Hamburg, from where it was transported to Poland.

The detainees were charged with participation in an organized criminal group, two of them were charged with smuggling significant amounts of narcotic drugs in the form of cocaine, and one with assistance in this crime. All three men were temporarily arrested by the Gdańsk-Południe District Court at the request of the Pomeranian Department of the Department of Organized Crime and Corruption of the National Prosecutor’s Office in Gdańsk.

The case is of a developmental nature, the participation of other people in this procedure and the activity of the company that imported drugs to Poland is being investigated. Further drug stops and seizures are not excluded.