A shipment of cocaine worth £136m has been discovered stashed in banana boxes on board a ship from Panama

A massive shipment of cocaine has been discovered among boxes of bananas on board a Panamanian registered ship in Portsmouth.

The National Crime Agency (NCA) and Border Force Officers found 850kg of the drug with an estimated street value of £136m.

The NCA’s Tom Dowdall described the event as a “major blow” to the criminals involved.

Both agencies said it was the biggest drugs seizure since 1.2 tonnes of cocaine was discovered on a luxury yacht in Southampton in May 2011.

Immigration Minister Mark Harper said: “I congratulate the Border Force and NCA officers involved in stopping such a huge amount of drugs entering the UK and ending up on our streets.

“This joint operation is an example of the intelligence-led, co-ordinated action being taken to protect our border and target the organised criminals behind drug and people trafficking.”

The ship, which had travelled from Colombia, has been allowed to sail for Antwerp since the drugs were removed.

Image: National Crime Agency

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