Five tons of cocaine among octopus

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Long arm of the law finds drugs haul in boxes of frozen octopus.

9 January 2008

MADRID - Spanish and Portuguese police have seized five tons of cocaine hidden inside boxes of frozen octopus imported to Lisbon from Venezuela, authorities from the Iberian neighbours disclosed this week.

The unusual haul represents one of the largest cocaine busts in Spain and Portugal in recent years, with an estimated street value of more than EUR 150 million.

"This has been a very interesting strike against an important international drug trafficking network," José Ferreira, the head of the Portuguese Judicial Police's narcotics unit, told reporters in a press conference Monday.

Police spent two years investigating the alleged smugglers, among them five Spanish nationals and three Portuguese citizens. Ferreira said it was the first time the Portuguese and Spanish police had uncovered that particular smuggling technique.

[Copyright EL PAÍS 2008]

Subject: Spanish news

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