Europe

German customs seize 1,580 pounds of cocaine from Caribbean

  • Packages of cocaine  are on display at the customs office in Hamburg,, Germany, Friday, Feb. 3,  2017.  A container carrying 717 kilograms (1,580 pounds) of cocaine  which they estimate would have produced drugs with a street value of 145 million euros  ($156 million),  was seized in the Port of Hamburg. The director of the customs investigation office says it may be the largest amount of cocaine to have ever been seized in Germany. It was seized on Jan. 18 after it was found in a shipping container from the Dutch Caribbean island of Curacao. (Axel Heimken/dpa via AP)

    Packages of cocaine are on display at the customs office in Hamburg,, Germany, Friday, Feb. 3, 2017. A container carrying 717 kilograms (1,580 pounds) of cocaine which they estimate would have produced drugs with a street value of 145 million euros ($156 million), was seized in the Port of Hamburg. The director of the customs investigation office says it may be the largest amount of cocaine to have ever been seized in Germany. It was seized on Jan. 18 after it was found in a shipping container from the Dutch Caribbean island of Curacao. (Axel Heimken/dpa via AP)  (The Associated Press)

  • Packages of cocaine  are on display at the customs office in Hamburg,, Germany, Friday, Feb. 3,  2017.  A container carrying 717 kilograms (1,580 pounds) of cocaine  which they estimate would have produced drugs with a street value of 145 million euros  ($156 million),  was seized in the Port of Hamburg. The director of the customs investigation office says it may be the largest amount of cocaine to have ever been seized in Germany. It was seized on Jan. 18 after it was found in a shipping container from the Dutch Caribbean island of Curacao. (Axel Heimken/dpa vis AP)

    Packages of cocaine are on display at the customs office in Hamburg,, Germany, Friday, Feb. 3, 2017. A container carrying 717 kilograms (1,580 pounds) of cocaine which they estimate would have produced drugs with a street value of 145 million euros ($156 million), was seized in the Port of Hamburg. The director of the customs investigation office says it may be the largest amount of cocaine to have ever been seized in Germany. It was seized on Jan. 18 after it was found in a shipping container from the Dutch Caribbean island of Curacao. (Axel Heimken/dpa vis AP)  (The Associated Press)

  • A custom investigator examines a package  of cocaine  that is  on display at the customs office in Hamburg,, Germany, Friday, Feb. 3,  2017.  A container carrying 717 kilograms (1,580 pounds) of cocaine  which they estimate would have produced drugs with a street value of 145 million euros  ($156 million),  was seized in the Port of Hamburg. The director of the customs investigation office says it may be the largest amount of cocaine to have ever been seized in Germany. It was seized on Jan. 18 after it was found in a shipping container from the Dutch Caribbean island of Curacao. (Axel Heimken/dpa via AP)

    A custom investigator examines a package of cocaine that is on display at the customs office in Hamburg,, Germany, Friday, Feb. 3, 2017. A container carrying 717 kilograms (1,580 pounds) of cocaine which they estimate would have produced drugs with a street value of 145 million euros ($156 million), was seized in the Port of Hamburg. The director of the customs investigation office says it may be the largest amount of cocaine to have ever been seized in Germany. It was seized on Jan. 18 after it was found in a shipping container from the Dutch Caribbean island of Curacao. (Axel Heimken/dpa via AP)  (The Associated Press)

Customs officials in the German port of Hamburg say they have seized 717 kilograms (1,580 pounds) of cocaine, which they estimate would have produced drugs with a street value of 145 million euros ($156 million).

The head of the Hamburg customs investigation office, Rene Matschke, said Friday that the cocaine — the largest single seizure of the drug in Germany to date — had a very high degree of purity, news agency dpa reported. It was seized on Jan. 18 after it was found in a shipping container from the Dutch Caribbean island of Curacao.

Matschke said that an international gang was behind the cocaine shipment and that there was a hostage-taking linked to the drugs in the Netherlands on Monday.