U.S. and Canadian authorities showed off the haul of a major smuggling operation along the remote border area of Montana, as their press conference coincided with the first sentencing in the case.
Over the last two years, smugglers have moved 1,000 kilograms of cocaine into Canada and 1.3 million tablets of the designer drug Ecstasy into the United States over the last two years.
17 people have been arrested and a driver was the first to be sentenced to five years in prison.
The cocaine originated in the states from Southern California and was to be distributed in British Columbia.
U.S. Attorney for Montana Michael Cotter said the international investigation seized 414 kilograms of cocaine and 29 kilograms of Ecstasy, and 17 people were arrested in the U.S. and Canada, making it one of the largest drug busts on either side of the border.
“This is certainly the largest seizure both here in Montana and Saskatchewan,” Cotter said in a news conference in Great Falls.