A sting operation conducted by the Drug Squad at a Sunset Crest, St James residence last Thursday discovered the drugs concealed in a number of wooden pallets. The cocaine, in powder form, was estimated to weigh 94 pounds (42.8 kilos).
Those charged were Barbadians Michael Forde, 30, unemployed, of Cemetery Lane, Road View, St Peter; Ryan Noel, 38, a security supervisor of Wavell Avenue, Black Rock, St Michael; along with Guyanese Andrew McHennon, 30, of Georgetown; Surain Persad, 44, of West Bank Demerara; and Davanand Outar, 34, of East Bank, Essequibo.
The five are expected to appear in the District “A” Magistrates’ Court tomorrow to answer charges of cocaine possession, trafficking and trafficking with intent to supply.
Forde is also being charged with keeping premises for the purpose of trafficking drugs. He was reportedly held at Grantley Adams International Airport Friday morning as he attempted to leave the island.
The drugs, disguised in the wooden pallets, are believed to have entered the island by boat.
Head of the Drug Squad, Superintendent Grafton Phillips, said the bust was an indication that Barbados was still being targeted as a transhipment point for the illegal activity.
The seizure is recorded as the second biggest ever following the conviction and sentencing of six Guyanese, including two women, for trafficking over $30 million worth of cocaine and marijuana into the island on June 4, 2009.
Ranging from prison terms between ten and 30 years, the six were found guilty after police caught them in a house in Bay Gardens, St Michael. The drugs were shipped from Guyana.
Last September, police also charged a St Thomas businessman with trafficking over 2 700 pounds of marijuana, which was discovered in a container at the Bridgetown Port.
Suleman Esuf, 22, of Redman’s Village, was accused of importing the ganja worth over $11 million between April and July last year.