Republic of Ireland news

Irish boat captain (67) in court over £80m cocaine seizure

The NCA said more than a tonne of cocaine was seized from the boat in 50 bags
Staff Reporter

AN Irishman has been charged in connection with an £80 million cocaine seizure after a vessel was stopped off the coast of England.

Michael McDermott (67), who is understood to be from the Republic, appeared at Bodmin Magistrates Court on Saturday.

He is accused of being the owner and captain of a converted fishing trawler used to import cocaine.

Two other men, Dutch national Gerald Van De Kooij (26) and Briton David Pleasants (57), also appeared in court.

All three men were remanded into custody and will appear at Bristol Crown Court on September 20.

The National Crime Agency and UK Border Force boarded the vessel just south of Falmouth in Cornwall on Thursday.

The NCA said more than a tonne of cocaine was seized from the boat in 50 bags.

Mike Stepney, director of national operations at Border Force, said: "This is one of the most significant drugs seizures ever made in the UK."

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