A plot by drug smugglers to bring £3mn worth of cocaine into Gatwick Airport from Barbados disguised as oil has been foiled.
The drugs were being hidden in unaccompanied goods deliveries that were flown from the Caribbean to the London airport.
UK Border police identified a suspect shipment coming into Gatwick from Barbados on July 17 and found 18kg of liquid cocaine on board, hidden inside three metal canisters described as “oil filters”. If cut and sold on the street the haul would have had a likely potential value in excess of £3mn.
The National Crime Agency (NCA) has arrested three people.
The next day, NCA officers arrested 54-year-old Barbados-born Errol Watson, from Wanstead, East London.
He was later charged with importation of controlled drugs and remanded in custody.
Two men, aged 28 and 41, were also arrested in London and released on bailed, while police in Barbados arrested a further two men.
The investigation was a collaboration between National Crime Agency and the Royal Barbados Police Force.
The National Crime Agency has arrested three people.
Steve McIntyre from the NCA’s Border Policing Command said: “We believe this operation has successfully disrupted an organised crime group who thought unaccompanied freight was a low-risk way of moving class A drugs into the UK.
“Our investigation is ongoing, both here and in the Caribbean.”
l Eleven people were arrested after a group of youths were involved in a late-night disturbance in an upmarket area of west London.
A number of weapons were seized when police were called to reports of disorder in Ladbroke Grove shortly before 2am on Friday.
Ten teenagers, eight males and two females, and a 20-year-old man were held for violent disorder while seven were also arrested for possessing an offensive weapon.
Among those arrested were four 18-year-old men, two 16-year-olds, a 14-year-old boy, 15-year-old girl and 18-year-old woman.
Police said there were no injuries.
Detective inspector Driss Hayoukane, from Kensington and Chelsea said: “Local officers responded quickly to reports of a disturbance and this resulted in 11 people being arrested.
“It’s our duty to ensure our streets are safe and we will not tolerate any form of disorder within the borough.
Enquires are ongoing into the disturbance last night.
“We have extra officers on duty across the borough tonight and throughout the weekend to provide reassurance.”
It comes following a week of shocking violence in the capital as London baked in the hottest weather of the year so far.
But police said there was nothing to suggest the incident is linked to previous disturbances as they appealed for witnesses to come forward.
Violent clashes between youths have taken place in Hyde Park, Burgess Park, Stamford Hill, Marble Arch and Harlesden.
l A stretch of Harlesden High Street has been closed off by police after a teenager was stabbed in the early hours of this morning.
Officers came across the 18-year-old boy just after 5am today, close to the junction with Nightingale Road.
The teen told police he had been stabbed, and paramedics were called.
The boy was taken to a north London hospital, where he was treated for stab wound injuries.
Police at the scene of the stabbing of an 18-year-old boy A met police spokeswoman said: “His injuries are not being treated as life threatening.
“Officers remain on scene and there are road closures in place.”
She said enquiries were continuing and no arrests had been made.
A witness this morning described seeing “tape everywhere” with a “a whole stretch of the High Street closed off”.
The road has been closed to traffic and pedestrians while police are at the scene.
Bus routes have also been diverted.
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