Keep WETM TV

15,500 Kilos of Cocaine, Worth $1 Billion Officials Say, Seized at Philadelphia Port; Crew Charged

Local News

Shipping containers full of illegal drugs have been found and seized by federal authorities at a Philadelphia port in what federal authorities describe as the largest seizure in the region’s history.

A senior law enforcement official said more than 15,500 kilos of cocaine were found in seven containers, which were found aboard a cargo ship, the MSC Gayane, that previously stopped in Colombia, Chile, Panama and the Bahamas.

Sources told NBC10 the cocaine was not meant for Philadelphia but instead for the Netherlands and France.

At least two crew members of the Gayane have been charged with trafficking, according to a complaint filed Tuesday by the U.S. Attorney’s Office. Other crew members were also allegedly involved, the complaint charges.

The bust occurred at the Packer Avenue Marine Terminal Port on the Delaware River in South Philadelphia, multiple local, state and federal law enforcement sources have told NBC10.

Members of the ship’s crew have been arrested and charged with federal drug trafficking charges, the U.S. Attorney for Eastern Pennsylvania said in a tweet. They allegedly pulled the drugs aboard while at sea, the complaint said.The massive cache of drugs could have a street value of $1 billion, the U.S. Attorney’s Office also tweeted.

Copyright 2019 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.