The Coast Guard has seized cocaine valued at $18 million dollars in a bust following a routine exercise.
The bust was made early Thursday morning aboard a pirogue.
The following is a statement by the Coast Guard:
"On Thursday 25th May 2017 at approximately 3:30 am a Trinidad and Tobago Coast Guard interceptor, while on routine patrol intercepted a twenty-four ft white pirogue in the Gulf of Paria with three (3) occupants on board.
On approaching the pirogue instructions were given to the occupants on board to neutralize and stop the vessel for a routine board and search exercise. However, the boat increased in speed and a chase ensued.
The pursuit lasted approximately three (3) minutes during which time the pirogue made several unsuccessful attempts to elude capture. However, the tactical maneuvers employed by the Coast Guard interceptor neutralised the vessel quickly.
The boat, occupants and contents on board were escorted back to Staubles Bay 5:50 am where further searches were conducted.
During the search two plastic bags containing 36 packages of white powder like substance weighing approximately 40 kgs with an estimated street value of eighteen million dollars (18 M TTD) were discovered.
The two Trinidadian and Venezuelan occupants on board were detained and subsequently handed over to the Organized Crime Narcotics and Firearms Bureau of the Trinidad and Tobago Police Service for further investigations.
This is the fifth drug seizure for the TTCG for the year thus far approximately totalling over eight hundred and fifty million dollars ($850,000,000.00 TTD)."