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Savannah customs seizes 346 pounds of cocaine

Special to SEGAZINE

The U.S. Customs and Border Protection office at the Port of Savannah has seized a little more than 346 pounds of cocaine from a shipping container at the Garden City Terminal.

Officers found 133 packages that contained a white powdery substance during inspections of shipping containers on April 14. Customs officers field-tested samples of the substance, which proved positive for the properties of cocaine, the agency said in a news release.

The estimated street value of the cocaine is more than $9 million.

“Most successful narcotics enforcement operations are the direct result of solid teamwork. This significant cocaine seizure is a great testament to the dedication, perseverance, and resolve of our employees to keep these dangerous and deadly narcotics off of our communities’ streets,” said Lisa Beth M. Brown, Customs’ port director for Savannah.

In November 2012, Customs officers seized 6,400 pounds of a leafy substance that was identified by the agency’s Savannah laboratory as khat, a Schedule 1 narcotic. The khat was shipped in a processed state to preserve its freshness and was manifested as tea. The khat’s estimated street value was about $1.7 million. Several people connected with the shipment were arrested.

Khat is a flowering shrub containing cathinone, and it is chemically similar to ephedrine and other amphetamines. Both the cocaine and the khat seizures remain active investigations.

savannahnow.com.

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