Police yet to destroy cocaine - Solomon Star News

Police yet to destroy cocaine

22 October 2018

POLICE are continuing to work on the plan for the destruction of the million dollars worth of cocaine that was seized from a yacht in Honiara on September 27.

Speaking at his weekly conference last Friday, Police Commissioner Matthew Varley said once they sorted out some technical issues in relation to the burning side of the cocaine they will hopefully do the destruction soon.

Mr Varley also added that process of the forfeiture of the boat has commenced and they are working with the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) on that.

The police chief added that they are keeping some samples.

“We keep some samples,” Mr Varley said when asked if they are keeping some for exhibition.

“We have already done some scientific testing and samples of the cocaine.

“.... and some of that is being in the process of being sent to Australia for further scientific and chemical testing in their labs.”

Mr Varley told reporters that of the overwhelming bulk of it, they keep 50 samples but are very small micro samples for chemical testing.

“The rest of it will be destroyed.

“We certainly don’t want to keep it as souvenir,” he said.

The Royal Solomon Islands Police Force (RSIPF) together with the Australian Federal Police and other Australian authorities on 27 September this year has seized million dollars worth of cocaine from a yacht in Honiara.

It was alleged the cocaine was loaded into the yacht in South America and sailed to Honiara.

Police earlier reported that the alleged organisers in Australia were making arrangement to bring the yacht just before it was searched by the RSIPF.

Mr Varley had earlier described the recent seizure as a land mark operation for the RSIPF since the end of Regional Assistance Mission to Solomon Islands (RAMSI).

 So far two two men suspected to be responsible for trafficking the 500 kilograms of cocaine have been arrested in Sydney, Australia, the same day police boarded the yacht Vieux Malin that was berthing in Honiara.

 One of the men, a 41-year-old has been charged with conspiracy to import a commercial quantity of illicit drugs and dealing with money.

 Another whom is a 39 year-old is being alleged to have facilitated the related money transfers.

 The cocaine was located in a cavity behind a false wall panel in the interior of the yacht.