|Bà Rịa - Vũng Tàu police examine the cocaine shipment. — VNA/VNS Photo|Viet Nam News
BÀ RỊA-VŨNG TÀU — Police in the southern province of Bà Rịa – Vũng Tàu have launched a criminal investigation into a shipment of cocaine that arrived on July 24.
The shipment, weighing 119 kilograms and worth an estimated VNĐ7 to 8 trillion (US$29.9 million), was found in a scrap metal container when it entered the province’s Tân Cảng–Cái Mép Thị Vải Port on July 24.
Total 17 scrap metal containers were imported by local company Pomina Steel Joint Stock Company 2 (Pomina 2) and were transported by a Liberian ship named the Mark Shenzhen.
The other 16 containers on board are awaiting examination by police.
Pomina 2 bought the scrap metal from StamCorp International Pte Ltd based in Singapore.
Đỗ Xuân Chiểu, Pomina’s chairman, confirmed that the company did not import illegal substances. He said the two companies had met with police and were willing to assist the investigation.
“Both sides want the case to be resolved as soon as possible to avoid hurting our reputations,” said Chiểu.
The containers departed from Trinidad and Tobago and travelled across the Panama Canal to China before docking in Việt Nam.
Due to the complicated transportation route, Bà Rịa–Vũng Tàu police will have to cooperate with the Drug Criminal Investigation Department and INTERPOL. — VNS