Heavy Sentences Handed Down in Iceland’s Biggest Cocaine Bust Skip to content

Heavy Sentences Handed Down in Iceland’s Biggest Cocaine Bust

By Ragnar Tómas

police station Hlemmur
Photo: Golli.

The four defendants apprehended following Iceland’s biggest cocaine bust received heavy sentences this morning, Mbl.is reports. Only one of the defendants appeared in the courtroom for sentencing.

100 kg of cocaine hidden within a timber shipment

In August of last year, the police confiscated 100 kg of cocaine, which had been hidden inside seven logs included within a timber shipment to Iceland. The drugs were planted inside the logs in Brazil before being shipped to Iceland via the Netherlands.

As reported previously by Vísir, the Icelandic police got wind of the shipment in connection to an investigation into organised crime and subsequently notified police authorities in Rotterdam. The Rotterdam police replaced the cocaine with a fake substance before the container was shipped to Iceland. The estimated street value of the drugs is ISK 2 billion [$14 million/€13 million].

The container was shipped from customs to Borgartún in Reykjavík where it stood unmoved for two days. The container was then transported to Hafnarfjörður, where the cocaine was removed, packaged, and delivered to a third party for distribution and sale. The police subsequently seized the cocaine inside a vehicle on Vefarastræti in Mosfellsbær.

The four suspects in the case, none of which possess a criminal record of note, were subsequently charged with engaging in organised criminal activity, attempted large-scale narcotics offences, and money laundering. The case was filed before the Reykjavík District Court in November of last year.

Heavy sentences handed out

This morning, the District Court of Reykjavík handed out sentences to the four defendants. As noted by Mbl.is, Páll Jónsson received a ten-year prison sentence; Birgir Halldórsson received an eight-year prison sentence; Daði Björnsson received a six-year and six-month prison sentence; and Jóhannes Páll Durr, the only defendant to appear in the courtroom for sentencing, received a six-year prison sentence.

In addition to the prison sentences, the defendants must pay more than ISK 11 million [$81,000/€74,000] in legal fees each, and more than ISK 1 million [$7,000/€7,000] each in court costs (i.e. málskostnaður).

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