Heroin with a street value of more than £120m has been discovered hidden among towels and dressing gowns on board a container ship.

The National Crime Agency (NCA) said the haul weighing nearly 1.3 tonnes represented the largest ever seizure of the class A drug in the UK and one of the largest in Europe. It was recovered from a container on board the MV Gibraltar after it docked at Felixstowe on 30 August. The drugs were stored in packets labelled as protein powder, which were inside boxes filled with towels and dressing gowns.

After the drugs were removed, officers returned the container to the ship, which continued to Antwerp and docked in the Belgian port city on 1 September, and was driven by lorry to a warehouse in Rotterdam, the Netherlands. As it was unloaded Dutch and Belgian officers police swooped and arrested four people.

Jenny Sharp, Border Force assistant director at Felixstowe, said some of the 1kg blocks of heroin had been stitched inside towels and it took officers nearly six hours to remove them.

With the Press Association


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