US customs officials seized a container ship financed by JPMorgan this week, after authorities found nearly 18 tons of cocaine with an estimated street value of $1.3 billion in the vessel.
A container ship financed by JPMorgan was seized by US customs officials this week , after authorities found nearly 18 tons of cocaine with an estimated street value of $1.3 billion on the vessel. The drug bust on the MSC Gayane is surprising for several reasons, which we outline below.
The roughly 39,500 pounds or 17.9 metric tons of cocaine found onboard the MSC Gayane outweighedthe total amount of cocaine that passed through West Africa in 2013, and all of the cocaine seized across Africa between 2013 and 2016, according to the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime.
The vast quantity might reflect a supply glut. Global cocaine manufacturing surged by a quarter in 2016 to 1,410 tons, according to the World Drug Report 2018 . The production boom is centered in Colombia, where cultivation of the coca plant rose 17% to 171,000 hectares in 2017, according to the UNODC .