The Spanish National Police have seized a yacht carrying 172 kgs of hashish after intercepting the vessel which had reported being attacked by a killer whale in the Straits of Gibraltar.
The Spanish authorities say they observed the “irregular” movements off the Spanish coast and where monitoring the vessel when the crew radioed to seek assistance due to the orca attacks.
The coasts of Spain have seen significant levels of such attacks over the last few years.
The orcas typically ram sailing vessels and some have reported considerable damage – as well as a frightening experience.
Orcas, or killer whales, can weigh up to six tons and measure nearly 10 metres in length.
In September 2020, Spain temporarily banned sailing boats from part of its northwest coast after around 50 orca attacks had been reported.
The gangs ruse was to simulate such an attack and have the coastguard tow the boat to the Andalucian port of Barbate, in the province of Cadiz.
There the drugs could be unloaded little by little and stored in a hiding place closeby.
Instead the yacht was searched and the drugs and crew seized.
The two-man crew were arrested as well as more than €63,000 were seized as part of the investigation.