German police seize 35 tonnes of cocaine in ‘largest bust Europe has ever seen’

German investigators discovered 35.5 tonnes of cocaine worth 2.6 billion euros (£2.2bn) on different container ships in connection with what they called the largest cocaine find in the country so far.

Prosecutors in the western city of Duesseldorf told reporters that they were initially tipped off by Colombian authorities and that investigators seized almost 25 tons of cocaine in the port of the northern city of Hamburg last year.

Another eight tons were found in Rotterdam and almost three tons in Colombia.

The drugs were hidden between vegetables and fruit.

In recent weeks, they also arrested seven suspects aged between 30 and 54, who are believed to be behind the smuggling.

Dr Benjamin Limbach, minister for justice in North Rhine-Westphalia, praised authorities for the work which resulted in “the largest cocaine find on European soil”.