Australia seal drug gang, Giant seal thwarts alleged international drug smugglers.
A “huge” seal helped to thwart an international drug smuggling ring in Australia after it prevented two men from fleeing from police.
A $1bn (£810m) drug haul was discovered on the tiny Burton Island, off Western Australia after a yacht ran aground and was abandoned, local reports say. Police rushed to the island and two suspects were seen running toward a dinghy in an effort to get away – only to be confronted by the animal, which sealed their fate.
“The men woke it up and it jumped up with its big chest out and bellowed at them,” Damien Healy, a vice-commander with the Volunteer Marine Rescue Service, told Australia’s ABC Radio.
“The guys basically had the choice of going through the seal or getting arrested and they ended up choosing getting arrested,” he added. Briton Graham Palmer, 34, and Frenchman Antoine Dicenta, 51, were allegedly found with more than a tonne of methylamphetamine, cocaine and ecstasy in dozens of bags they had attempted to hide under seaweed. They were refused bail along with three other men.
International drug syndicate
“We’ve disrupted a big international drug syndicate here,” Western Australia’s Police Commissioner Chris Dawson said.
It is not known what species the meritorious marine mammal was. Of the seal species found in Australian waters, only the Australian sea lion and the Australian and New Zealand fur seals can be found on the mainland and in Tasmanian waters. The others, including the threatened leopard seal and southern elephant seal, are found in Australia’s Antarctic territories.