Onlookers watched in amazement as a customs surveillance helicopter was involved in a face-off with a high-powered semi-rigid craft in the normally quiet waters of the Puerto de la Duquesa in Manilva on Sunday (14 February).
After chasing the boat, of the type often used by drug trafficking operations along the coast, for several minutes the pilot of the helicopter turned sharply and hovered his craft, just a few metres above the sea and directly in the line of the boat.
Spectators filmed the scene on their mobile phones as the helicopter crew decide it was too dangerous to continue the pursuit in the port and the high-powered boat got away.
However, according to sources consulted by SUR the operation was still branded a success because there were individuals waiting for the semi-rigid craft in the port to supply it with food and other items to stay at sea while waiting to carry out refuelling operations. Sources also added that there was no evidence that the boat actually carried drugs.
Investigations are being carried out to see if the incident relates to an operation that the customs service carried out the day before (Saturday) in La Línea de la Concepción. Officials seized several fuel containers that the crew of a suspected drug trafficking vessel had thrown during their attempt to escape.
Also, at the weekend, there was another incident in the Manilva marina. Local Police and Guardia Civil officers surprised several individuals who were trying to refuel a boat. In the video obtained by SUR several young people can be seen frantically trying to start a boat before jumping into the harbour and trying to escape by swimming.