Only one part of cocaine was seized, which was part of a large quantity of drugs with
North Macedonia as its final destination, four men arrested, a financial investigation
into a company where the drug was found and possible involvement of other people
or companies – these are the results of Wednesday’s police operation in the village
of Krusopek near Skopje.
Speaking at a news conference, Interior Minister Nakje Culev fell short of saying
what was the exact quantity of drugs after some media reported that the operation
had targeted 1.3 tons of cocaine.
“At the moment, in the interest of the investigation, I cannot give any further details,
but we are looking into a huge quantity,” he said.
The drugs, Chulev said, originated from Colombia and the package of cocaine was
found in a fruit warehouse of the company Baneks. The Special Operations Unit
searched the company’s warehouse until late on Wednesday as part of a two-day
police operation, launched on Feb. 17. The company had imported fruit, mostly from
Colombia and with some originating from Ecuador.
“Special forces, tasked with fighting organized crime in coordination with a public
prosecutor on February 17-19, as part of an international law enforcement
cooperation, were part of an operation to bust illegal drug trafficking. One kilogram of
cocaine was seized, which is only a segment of a larger quantity with our country as
its final destination,” Minister Culev told the news conference.
An Iveco cargo van was reported while crossing the Albania-North Macedonia border
at around 9 pm on Wednesday. The van’s driver, a 31-year-old man from
Montenegro, was headed toward Krushopek, where police were searching the fruit
warehouse, owned by a 47-year-old man from Skopje. His 22-year-old son was also
there together with a 51-year-old man, an employee, to receive the cargo. The four
men have been arrested, the Minister said.
Mobile phones, bundles of money were seized as part of the operation as well as the
cargo van, 98 packages of bananas, documents and devices, said Culev.
Reiterating that the operation was part of an international cooperation, Culev did not
reveal more information, saying it might hinder the investigation.
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