Sh360m cocaine: Detectives link ‘missing’ vessel to al Shabaab

The vessel in which Sh360 million cocaine was found at Mombasa port might have ferried weapons to al Shabaab in Somalia.

MSC Posetano docked at Mombasa on July 27 and departed without authorisation on July 29 shortly after 100kg of cocaine hidden in a shipment of brown sugar was seized.

It was spotted in Mogadishu on Wednesday on its way to the Port of Kismayo, said Kenya Maritime Authority acting director general Cosmas Cherop.

Cherop did not give details of the crew and the vessel’s next destination but said they can be obtained from the Kenya Ports Authority.

Officials from the US-based Drug Enforcement Agency and the NIS said they believe the vessel carried weapons and drugs.

“That is why it was quickly sneaked out of the port,” a source said.

President Uhuru Kenyatta had ordered the destruction of all vessels carrying narcotics. One was blow up in August 2014 and another in August 2015.

Investigators further said that the Briton arrested in connection with the drugs was released after investigations. He was trailed from the Port of Santos in Brazil.

Police sources said a court order has been obtained to detain those arrested in connection with the drug haul but they did not give the number of suspects.

The Briton and two Kenyans had been held for interrogation but the number of those linked to the haul increased.

More on this: Sh360m cocaine: Briton, two Kenyans arrested, owner flees

Police are yet to give details of the exact amount of cocaine seized, the cartels involved and why the vessel was not seized while on Kenya’s waters.

They have also not given details on claims top government officials were involved.

Read: Cocaine seized at Mombasa port belonged to renowned drug baron

The consignment was packed as 520 bags of brown sugar on transit to Uganda by Mshale Commodities located in Bugolobi, Industrial Area.

Ugandan consulate Tayebwa Katureebe said no one has launched a complain with his office regarding the drugs.

“We have a very good working relationship with the Kenyan authority but no one has brought any complaint to my attention,” he said.

Interior CS Joseph Nkaissery said a concrete statement would follow a report from the Directorate of Criminal Investigations.

This Article was originally published in the Star

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