For those of you in landlocked midwestern states, the idea of finding barnacle-crusted anything is a bit strange. However, according to the police from varying locations, this is becoming rather commonplace when finding large stashes of drugs.
In recent reports and police statements in Australia, a total of seven barnacle-covered plastic-wrapped packages were discovered washed up on beaches between Sydney and Newcastle. Inside is what has been reported as cocaine.
Australia: Large amounts of cocaine have been washing up on beaches from Newcastle to Sydney, with seven barnacle-encrusted packages found over the weekend. The packages were suspected to contain cocaine and were discovered in various locations. pic.twitter.com/JleqFEsIFm
— World Crime Intel (@WorldCrimeIntel) December 26, 2023
Naturally, a statement has been issued by the New South Wales police department warning of such packages and advising finders of them to avoid “removing or opening any of” them. Instead, the police should immediately be called.
Apparently, it’s one of the more popular ways to transport drugs these days without being detected. That is if your bobbing packages can be found and picked up before they wash up on a beach to be found by police.
According to authorities, the idea is for international drug dealers to simply dump the drugs in the ocean for later pickup or distribution.
And based on recent findings, it’s a growing method.
Authorities have fished out a total of 3.5 tons of cocaine off the coasts of New Zealand this year. In Italy, police have found over 70 waterproof floating packages, noted to contain about 2 tons of cocaine and costing about $650 million.
Similar packages have also been spotted off the coast of the Florida Keys in recent months.
As you can imagine, police departments and task forces have been using this floating method to catch some pretty bad individuals. In some instances, when police have found such packages, they are replaced with fake ones and then monitored until the drugs lead authorities to cartels or syndicates planning to disperse them.
In one instance, authorities were able to recover 1.2 tons of fake drugs, $2 million in cash, and three drug-dealing men.
So, if you come across a barnacle-encrusted package near the water, it’s probably best to get the authorities involved.