Bremen, Germany (dpa) – Investigators from the State Criminal Police Office and the Hanover Customs Investigation Office prevented the smuggling of more than 700 kilos of cocaine into Germany, the customs office said on Thursday.
The seized drugs had a street sale value of more than 50 million euros (54 million dollars), they said.
German officials have been investigating on behalf of the public prosecutor the operator of a freight forwarder from the northern German state of Lower Saxony since the beginning of the year.
Based on their findings, they informed their Belgian colleagues in the port of Antwerp about the arrival of five suspicious containers of table salt from Brazil.
In early February, the Belgian investigators checked the containers and found more than 700 kilos of hidden cocaine in addition to the registered salt.
“The German freight forwarder was not only responsible for the transport logistics, but also the buyer of the salt,” the office said.
The salt container was finally transported to Lower Saxony by truck, where officials searched the forwarding area and secured evidence.
The investigators initially did not want to give any further details.