More than one tonne of cocaine was seized from a banana container at the port of Gioia Tauro in the southern Italian region of Calabria. This was announced by Italian carabinieri and the financial police, BTA reported.
The container was traveling from South America and had to reach Germany. The drug found in it, totaling 1.2 tonnes, could be sold for at least EUR 250 million.
Pope Francis fired the latest salvo in his condemnation of the Italian mafia on Wednesday, telling gangsters that they "carry death in their souls" and cannot claim to be Catholics.
Speaking at his weekly general audience in St Peter's Square, the Pope excoriated mafia criminals in a discourse about "fake Christians" who, he said, claim to be pious but in fact "live a corrupt life".
Francis on June 21 issued the strongest attack on organised crime groups by a pontiff in two decades, accusing them of practicing the "the adoration of evil" and saying mafiosi are excommunicated.
It was the first time a pope had used the word excommunication - a total cutoff from the Church - in direct reference to members of organised crime.