Cop 'was key' to coke-in-doors smuggling

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Hannah Cleaver - [email protected]
Cop 'was key' to coke-in-doors smuggling
Photo: DPA

A policeman was key to a cocaine smuggling operation which brought more than 400 kilos of the drug into Germany in hollowed-out doors, prosecutors said.


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The 35-year-old detective chief inspector in Hamburg bought himself a villa with the proceeds before his colleagues got a handle on the door-smuggling operation, the Hamburger Morgenpost newspaper reported on Friday.

Four men drew up the plan to bring the drug to Europe in doors, managing to smuggle 416 kilos in several shipments - drugs which would have had a street value of at least €40 million, the paper said.

The scheme hinged on bringing the doors from Santa Cruz in Bolivia and Guayaquil, Ecuador. Already filled with cocaine, they were loaded onto boats and shipped to Hamburg. The first shipment containing around 100 kilos of coke arrived in August 2009, the Morgenpost said.

This was such a success that the group repeated the move the following January, and again later in 2010.

By this time the detective chief inspector had bought himself a villa - but could not enjoy it for long - last November police in Ecuador found 24 wooden doors ready for shipment which contained 186 kilos of cocaine - and tipped off their colleagues in Hamburg.

The policeman and his three alleged accomplices face drug smuggling charges relating to a "not inconsiderable amount of narcotics" the Morgenpost said. He could face up to 15 years in prison if convicted, but prosecutors are aware they have not yet identified the main movers behind the operation.

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