Romania seizes huge shipment of drugs from Syria

CONSTANTA, Romania — On Tuesday, Romanian police seized what they described as “the largest drug shipment in its history” coming from the Syrian port of Latakia.

The shipment of drugs, hidden inside shipping containers transporting high-density organic soap, consisted of over 4 million pills (751 kg) of captagon — an amphetamine used for recreational purposes and by jihadists, among others, to enhance their fighting abilities — and 1,480 kilograms of hashish.

The market value of the seized drugs is estimated at 80 million euros, Romania’s prosecution body for organized crime said in a statement.

The Romanian operation was carried out with the assistance of the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration.

On 1 July, Italian authorities announced the seizure of a shipment 1 billion euros worth of captagon in the port of Salerno.

Initially attributed to the Islamic State by Italian authorities, subsequent investigation points to a prominent Syrian figure in the close circle of the Assad regime as the likely source of the drugs.