Friday, March 13, 2020

Cape Verde cocaine smugglers sentenced

From the extreme comfort of its newly-built five star hotels, the Cape Verde islands off Africa's west coast are like paradise. The archipelago 600 miles into the Atlantic is 'Africa's best kept little secret'. The region's other little secret is the presence of international drug cartels.
The islands lie along the Tenth Parallel – a line of latitude called 'Highway 10' because it marks the shortest route between Latin America and Africa.
Cape Verde is a place to refuel ships, warehouse product, and pass it on for the final haul to Britain and Europe. Exactly how much product is coming down Highway 10 became clear in February 2019, when 10 tonnes of cocaine were found on the Eser, a freighter docked at Cape Verde. It is the biggest haul of European-bound cocaine in history.

The Russian captain and crew were found guilty of drug trafficking and sentenced to jail. Captain Sergei Kotlovskii said during the trial he was forced to take the drugs aboard in the Caribbean by the ship’s owner. Kotlovskii got 12 years for international drug trafficking. The rest of the crew got 10 years for the same crime.