LIMA (Reuters) – – Dozens of packages of cocaine marked with Nazi swastikas as well as the name “Hitler” were seized at a port in northern Peru, from where would have been shipped to Belgium, police said on Friday.
Police said it was investigating whether there were links to Nazi groups, saying there were no well-known groups in Peru and that it was possible the symbol was only being used as a style.
Drugs are often identified with a symbol representing the group which makes or moves the product.
The 50 “bricks” of cocaine, weighting some 58 kilos and worth $3 million were discovered by anti-drug agents inside a refrigerated container in the port of Paita, Police Colonel Luis Bolanos told reporters.
Peru and Colombia are the largest producers of coca leaf and cocaine in the world, according to the United Nations. Last year alone, Peruvian authorities seized more than 86 tonnes of drugs and illicit substances, including 28 tonnes of cocaine.
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After being shipped to a Belgian port, Bolanos said the drugs would have been distributed across Belgium, the Netherlands, France and Spain.
After World War II, thousands of high-ranking Nazi officers sought refuge in South America, while in Europe, captured leaders stood trial for crimes against humanity.
A number of fringe neo-Nazi groups have since emerged across Europe, including in Belgium.
(Reporting by Anthony Marina; Writing by Marco Aquino and Carolina Pulice; Editing by Sarah Morland and David Gregorio)
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