Cyprus Mail
Crime Cyprus

Cocaine found on board seized Cyprus ship

CYPRUS-based Intership Navigation said on Thursday they had no reason to believe any of its crew was involved in drug trafficking after one of the vessels under its management, the MV UBC Savannah, was detained in Altamira in Mexico with 225 kilogrammes of cocaine found in one of its holds, under a cargo of metallurgical coke.

The drugs were first detected and reported to local authorities by the ship’s command, the company said in a statement.

It added that the cargo was loaded in Barranquilla in Colombia with shore grabs and stevedores.

“In line with our stringent policies, ISPS measures were elevated in Barranquilla and several drug searches (holds, deck, superstructure and underwater) were carried out – but did not reveal anything,” it said, adding that at this point in time “we have no reason to believe that any of our crew were involved in the drug trafficking.”

Managers and crew are fully cooperating with local authorities to investigate the matter, it said, “whilst we are at the same time supporting our crew in this difficult situation.”

The company said it will be posting further updates as the situation develops.

According to media reports, 22 members of the crew were arrested, 19 from the Philippines and three from Poland.

Cyprus police is to make enquiries on whether the arrested crew members have any contacts with Cypriot citizens.

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