Police seize $44.3 million worth of cocaine hidden in shipment of onion rings

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Police in the UK have charged a truck driver after $44.3 million (£33 million) worth of cocaine was found in a shipment of frozen onion rings, the British National Crime Agency (NCA) said in a statement.

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The 418 kilograms of drugs were discovered on Thursday evening by border police when they stopped the truck in Coquelles, France, on its way to the UK.

Piotr Pezenowski, 30, of Mazowieckie, Poland, was charged with smuggling class A drugs.

He appeared at Folkeston Magistrates’ Court on Saturday morning and was kept in custody ahead of a Canterbury Crown Court appearance on December 13.

“This was a really significant amount of drugs taken out of circulation,” said NCA Branch Commander Mark Howes in a statement.

“The seizure will deprive the organized crime group responsible for them of profit, which would have fueled more offending,” he added.

“Working with our partners such as Border Force, we will continue to fight the Class A drugs threat in our mission to protect the public.”

A Briton and six Nicaraguans were arrested when $215 million (£160 million) worth of cocaine was found in a luxury yacht off the coast of Plymouth, UK, in September, the BBC previously reported.

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