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Suspects arrested in R500m cocaine haul could face more charges - NPA

The 10 were on board a fishing vessel that was carrying 973 blocks of compressed cocaine valued at over R500 million.

Police in the Western Cape seized cocaine valued at over R500 million from a fishing vessel on the Saldana coast on 1 March 2021. Picture: Twitter/@SAPoliceService

CAPE TOWN - The suspects arrested during a massive cocaine bust in Saldanha could face more charges.

The 10 were on board a fishing vessel that was carrying 973 blocks of compressed cocaine valued at over R500 million.

The bust was made on Monday night and the foreigners appeared in the Vredenburg Magistrates Court on Thursday.

The 10 accused were charged with dealing in drugs or, illegal drug possession.

The National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) said that more charges are likely to be added as the investigation continued.

Four of the accused were from Bulgaria and six were from Myanmar.

ALSO READ: R500mn Saldanha Bay cocaine bust may have links to South America

The NPA said that some of the Bulgarian nationals understood English a bit but when the defence tried to consult with those from Myanmar, they did not appear to be able to follow proceedings in English.

The defence has asked the State to organise interpreters to ensure that their rights were protected.

The case has been postponed to 12 March.

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