[caption id="attachment_71618" align="aligncenter" width="640"] - The Halifax-class frigate Her Majesty's Canadian Ship (HMCS) Toronto (FFH 333) cruises ahead of USS George Washington (CVN 73) during a strike group photo formation while operating in the Arabian Gulf. The Halifax, Nova Scotia-based frigate joined the Norfolk, Va. based aircraft carrier on a scheduled deployment in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF).
U.S. Navy photo by Photographer's Mate 1st Class Brien Aho (RELEASED)[/caption]
The HMCS Toronto successfully stopped a known smuggling vessel carrying 154 bags of heroine Friday, according to CTV News. The ships' Captain, Commander Matthew Bowen said that the operation not only went smoothly, but that the drugs would have helped fund terrorist operations in Africa and possibly Afghanistan.
The HMCS Toronto made the seizure approximately 800 Kilometers off the coast of the Horn of Africa; Commander Bowen told CTV News that they would not be pursuing any other persons involved in this specific drug trade.
The 500 kg (1,100 pounds) of heroine seized is estimated to be worth more than $100 million U.S., according to the Huffington Post. This seizure marks one of the larges and most significant drug busts to have taken place on the high seas.
The HMCS Toronto is part of an international naval task force that patrols the Arabian Sea and Indian Ocean. This task force had been put together due to a rise in drug traffickers increasing use of maritime passageways.
In press release Defense Minister Peter MacKay said, "This massive narcotics seizure is one example of how our Canadian Armed Forces members deployed in Canada and around the world are making a difference in international security, and stability by denying criminals, possibly terrorists, their source of funding."