WATCH: Police seize boat transporting 560 kilos of cocaine in Canary Islands waters

WATCH: Police seize boat transporting 560 kilos of cocaine in Canary Island waters Credit: Twitter @policia

The boat transporting the cocaine in Canary Island waters was seized by agents of the Spanish National Police, in a joint operation with the Civil Guard and Customs Surveillance of the Tax Agency, in the early hours of June, 3.

“A fishing boat with 560 kilos of cocaine seized in the waters south of the #Canary Islands. The 8 crew members of the vessel, which was sailing without a flag and bound for #Europe, have been arrested,” tweeted the Spanish National Police alongside footage of the incident.


Credit: Twitter @policia

As reported by the police, the operation, called ‘Blanco Brasil’, led to the boarding of the vessel, a 19-metre fishing boat converted for the illicit transport of drugs, some 270 nautical miles south of the Canary Islands for its subsequent transfer to the port of Las Palmas.

The operation, directed and coordinated by the Anti-Drugs Prosecutor’s Office of the Audiencia Nacional, began, within the framework of international cooperation, with the exchange of information between the investigating agencies, the MAOC-N (Atlantic Analysis and Operations Centre) and CITCO (Centre for Intelligence against Terrorism and Organised Crime), which determined the existence of a vessel suspected of illicit drug trafficking from South America.

From that moment on, the Tax Agency’s Deputy Directorate of Customs Surveillance, in coordination with the Central Narcotics Brigade of the National Police and the Civil Guard’s UTPJ, set up the appropriate deployment for the location, identification and, if necessary, boarding of the target, which was finally carried out by the Tax Agency’s Special Operations Vessel ‘Petrel’.

The task of searching for the target was highly complex in nautical terms, given the scarce information available on the vessel’s geolocation. At the same time, the navigation conditions up to the time of the intervention had been complex due to adverse weather conditions when passing through the archipelago of Madeira due to the Azores squall.

Finally, once the fishing vessel was detected thanks to the professionalism of the crew of the ‘Petrel’, a quick and clear boarding action was carried out in technically safe conditions despite the sea conditions.

During the course of the intervention, a large quantity of bales of the type normally used for cocaine trafficking were found. At that moment, the eight crew members of the unidentified fishing boat were arrested and the vessel was secured.

Once the detainees were on board the ‘Petrel’, the fishing boat was towed to the port of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria. The detainees, the vessel, the drugs and the police proceedings will be handed over to the Central Examining Court (Juzgado Central de Instrucción en funciones de Guardia de la Audiencia Nacional).

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Written by

Joshua Manning

Originally from the UK, Joshua is based on the Costa Blanca and is a web reporter for the Euro Weekly News covering international and Spanish national news. Got a news story you want to share? Then get in touch at