By SANCHESKA BROWN
Tribune Staff Reporter
SIX Bahamians – including one woman - are in police custody in connection with the discovery of nearly $1 million worth of cocaine and marijuana in two separate drug busts over the weekend.
In the past two weeks, police have confiscated more than $7 million in marijuana in four major drug busts in New Providence, Andros and Exuma.
The first incident took place Saturday evening in Exuma.
Chief Superintendent Samuel Butler, officer-in-charge of the Drug Enforcement Unit (DEU), said a combination of teamwork and “excellent police work” led to the arrest of the five suspects.
“DEU and the Marine Support Unit were on routine patrol in Exuma around 7.30pm on Saturday when they encountered a 17-foot whaler in waters off Black Point, Exuma,” Supt Butler said.
“When officers approached the vessel, they observed the suspects ejecting two bags from the boat into the water. After a short pursuit, officers were able to take control of the suspected vessel and arrested five persons in total, four males and one female.”
The second drug bust took place shortly after midnight on Sunday at an airport in Andros.
“Acting on intelligence, DEU along with partners, conducted surveillance in the area of San Andros Airport in North Andros, where we received information that an aircraft was offloading bags at the northern end of the runway into a track road that led into the bushes,” Supt Butler said.
“The officers were able to go to the area and found a number of bags, eight in total, each containing suspected marijuana. One of the bags contained six kilograms of cocaine. One man was taken into custody – we are still on the hunt for more suspects in connection with this bust.”
Supt Butler could not reveal the estimated street value of the drugs, but said the combined total of both seizures was a little “under $1 million.”
Last Wednesday, four Bahamians, three men and one woman, were arrested in New Providence after they were allegedly caught with more than $1m worth of cocaine and marijuana. Those drugs had an estimated street value of $1,186,000.
One week earlier, police arrested six men, five Bahamians and one Jamaican, following a major drug find in waters off South Andros.
The US Coast Guard reported that 5,050lbs of marijuana had been seized, with an estimated wholesale value of $4.6m.
Investigations into all of these matters are continuing.