Britain’s Royal Navy seizes over $20 million worth of drugs in the Gulf of Oman
“During an operation lasting nearly 10 hours, a team from the warship embarked a suspect in international waters off Oman and seized 663 kg of heroin, 87 kg of methamphetamine and 291 kg of hashish. and marijuana,” the statement read.
“This is the Royal Navy’s largest drug seizure since last year, HMS Montrose seized 2.4 tonnes of illicit substances in the Arabian Sea,” the MoD said.
A team from HMS Montrose approached a small vessel on two rigid-hull inflatable boats – where, after a search, they were able to recover the illicit drugs – before proceeding to analyze and destroy them.
The warship regularly works alongside international partners who make up the 34-nation Combined Maritime Forces coalition, which was led by the Royal New Zealand Navy at the time of the drugs affair. The leadership role has now passed to the Pakistan Navy.
The Ministry of Defense said: “The Combined Maritime Forces (CMF) is a multinational maritime partnership, which exists to counter illicit non-state actors.
“This successful operation prevented a large quantity of illicit drugs from potentially reaching the UK and being sold on British streets. Organized criminals, often associated with the financing of terrorism, have also been denied a source of income,” the statement said.
The commanding officer of HMS Montrose, Commander Claire Thompson said in a statement:
“Our enduring presence never wanes. Nine rotations in the forward deployed pattern, HMS Montrose remains as professional and enthusiastic as ever.
“Starboard Crew’s relentless efforts resulted in a major illegal narcotics seizure and I am extremely proud of my team.”
UK Defense Secretary Ben Wallace also said: “The Royal Navy continues to move forward with our partners in the Combined Maritime Forces to stamp out the smuggling of illegal substances.
“Thanks to this successful bankruptcy, our streets are safer and have choked off a huge source of funding for international organized crime groups.”