Philadephia - US authorities seized 33,000 pounds, or 15,000 kilograms, of cocaine from a ship at Philadelphia's port in what they described as one of the largest drug busts in American history.
They said the haul could have been worth more than $1 billion on the street.
The US attorney's office in Philadelphia announced the massive bust on Twitter on Tuesday afternoon, saying that law enforcement agents found the cocaine on a ship at the Packer Marine Terminal. Two members of the crew were arrested and face federal charges.
Agents with dogs swarmed the colossal ship Tuesday afternoon, including one officer who could be seen climbing into the back of a large red container on wheels. Court documents said the bust began Monday.
An affidavit alleged that crew members helped load the cocaine onto the MSC Gayane while it was at sea off the west coast of South America. Citing an interview with one of the crew members, authorities said a total of 14 boats approached the vessel on two separate occasions during its voyage. Several crew members allegedly helped transfer bales of cocaine.