Dutch Navy Guard Ship intercepts cocaine shipment

PHILIPSBURG, St. Maarten - The Netherlands Navy Guard Ship Groningen intercepted 400 kg of cocaine in the vicinity of the Leeward Islands, St Maarten, Statia and Saba last week.

The guard ship is operating for the Dutch Caribbean Coast Guard.

The maritime patrol aircraft Dash 8 of the Dutch Caribbean Coast Guard spotted a suspect vessel during a patrol. The vessel’s crew was seen dumping packages into the ocean.

The maritime helicopter NH90 of the Groningen was launched to mark the exact location of the packages. The FRISC, the interceptor on board of Groningen, sailed to this location to retrieve the packages.

It was discovered that extra weight was added to the packages to make them sink. 400 kg of cocaine was found in them.

HNMLS Groningen was ceremonially welcomed in the harbor of St. Maarten Friday morning. The contraband was handed over to the authorities in St. Maarten.

After a port visit, the ship will participate in the yearly hurricane relief exercise, before setting sail to Curacao.

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