25 Nov 2014

Record black pearl seizure in French Polynesia

3:30 pm on 25 November 2014

Customs authorities in French Polynesia have made a record seizure of black pearls, suspected of being used in the financing of drug deals.

On Friday customs officials in Papeete discovered five-point-three kilogrammes of the pearls being carried by a 50 year old man.

At his home they discovered 327 kilogrammes of pearls banned from sale, 8-thousand 5-hundred US dollars worth of local currency, and the drug methamphetamine imported from the United States.

The authorities say the 400-thousand US dollars worth of pearls is a record amount to be seized in one go.

The suspect had recently been released from prison where he had been serving a sentence for drug dealing.

The officials say black pearls are used as exchange in the trafficking of methamphetamine.