The snipers took aim from a Lynx helicopter after the boat and its crew refused to stop

A speedboat carrying 215 kilos of cocaine had its engines disabled by Royal Marine snipers last week after refusing to stop.

Gunmen onboard a Lynx helicopter were left with no choice but to shoot out all three of the vessel’s engines in the middle of the Atlantic in order to bring it to a halt.

The Royal Navy’s HMS Argyll deployed a helicopter to intercept the boat after suspecting it was attempting to smuggle drugs.

Lynx helicopter pilot Lieutenant Jonny Hamyln RN, said: “I had to work hard to keep the helicopter in the right place for the sniper team and for us to successfully disable the go-fast was a great team effort.”

This latest drugs haul is the fourth successful operation for the warship and its crew in recent months, having recovered £77m worth of cocaine in total.

HMS Argyll’s commanding officer Commander Paul Hammond said: “I must acknowledge the skill of my flight crew and Royal Marine snipers but this drugs bust was made possible by the work of the entire ship’s company.

“We have had a series of drugs busts and they have all been different; they have ranged from night time chases to disabling engines with sniper fire, however, they have all shown the effect and versatility that can be delivered by a Royal Navy warship.”

HMS Argyll and her crew are now heading home for Christmas following highly successful counter narcotics operations in the Caribbean.

The ship has also provided assistance to Bermuda in the wake of Hurricane Gonzalo and hosted the Prince of Wales at an evening reception in Columbia.

First Sea Lord Admiral Sir George Zambellas said: “Having enhanced the Royal Navy’s authority in and around the Caribbean over the past six months, her ship’s company have really earned their leave and can reflect on a job well done.”

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