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Second huge drugs haul at Suffolk port

PUBLISHED: 13:51 09 June 2003 | UPDATED: 13:59 03 March 2010

FOURTEEN men are today in custody after £38 million-worth of drugs were found in cargo at Felixstowe port.

As revealed in Saturday's Evening Star, six men have been charged with smuggling 400 kilos of high-quality heroin with a street value believed to be more than £30 million - thought to be a record for a single haul in the UK.

FOURTEEN men are today in custody after £38 million-worth of drugs were found in cargo at Felixstowe port.

As revealed in Saturday's Evening Star, six men have been charged with smuggling 400 kilos of high-quality heroin with a street value believed to be more than £30 million – thought to be a record for a single haul in the UK.

Now Customs and National Crime Squad officers have revealed that they have made a second set of arrests in connection with a separate consignment of drugs found at the boxport.

This time they found £8 million worth of cocaine, about 120 kilos, hidden in a cargo of timber which arrived from Guyana at the end of last month.

In a joint operation, Customs officers, armed NCS men and Gwent police arrested eight men, who are today still being questioned by police.

Terry Byrne, Director General for Law Enforcement, Customs and Excise said: "These arrests were made in Wales but the drugs came through Felixstowe and it is highly likely they were intended to be distributed widely.

"This criminal activity is precisely the type of threat we face from modern-day smuggling. The success of these operations is down to new ways of working for Customs and that means modern, highly skilled flexible teams, good partnerships with police and National Crime Squad.

"These drugs would not have been picked up through routine detections by static officers.

"But by working in new ways, as demonstrated today, we can have an impact on this evil trade and take drugs out of the communities of Wales."

The heroin haul was hidden among a 160-ton cargo of cat litter which was imported from Turkey. After the drugs were discovered they were tracked to a warehouse in south Wales.

The six men charged with smuggling the heroin were have appeared at Horseferry Road magistrates in London.

They are Trevor Long, 46, a flower wholesale; Hamim Soylu, 48, a tailor; John Dalgleash, 55, a businessman; Grant Connors, 45, businessman; Sakip Gundogdu, 52, unemployed; Muzaffer Arslanoglus, 45, unemployed.

Dalgleash, Gundogdu and Arslanoglu were arrested at a warehouse at Pembrey Industrial Estate, Burry Port, South Wales. Long was arrested at Luton airport as he returned from abroad. Connors was arrested at his business address at Folkes Farm, on the junction of the A127 and the M25. Soylu was arrested at the Dartford crossing.

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