HMS Montrose makes another major drug haul in Arabian Sea

Royal Navy frigate HMS Montrose (F234) has struck for a third time in less than five weeks — in an operation lasting 10 hours, the Montrose intercepted over 2,800 kg (6100 lbs) of hashish and 50 kg (110 lbs) of heroin in the Arabian Sea on March 12, 2021.

HMS Montrose
Photo: CMF

The boarding team from the ship, operating in direct support of Combined Maritime Forces’ (CMF) Combined Task Force 150 (CTF-150) seized the drugs – with a combined estimated wholesale value of over $4.5 million – following searches of suspicious vessels whilst undertaking a counter-narcotics patrol.

This latest successful interdiction has further deprived criminal and terrorist networks of their ability to finance their operations through the transport and sale of illicit cargo. 

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This is the latest in a string of successful counter-narcotics operations since the Royal Canadian Navy assumed command of CTF-150 in late January 2021. CTF-150, one of three CMF task forces, is operating in the region to disrupt criminal and terrorist organizations to prevent terrorism and the illegal trade of drugs and weapons. 

As part of this, HMS Montrose alone has intercepted a combined haul of more than 13000 lbs over the ship’s last three interdictions, striking a tangible blow in the war against illegal drug trafficking. This is in addition to seizures by the US Navy and French Marine Nationale. Their collective success has directly contributed to maritime security operations in the Middle East, according to CMF.

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