Please select your home edition
Edition
Barz Optics - Polarised and non-polarised readers for sailors

Solo sailor's mast fall death leads to £20 million drug find

by Lee Mylchreest on 26 Jun 2013
Scene of mast fall tragedy - yacht Windrose, photo by Scilly Today .. .
Last week we published a story of the death of a sailor who fell from his mast after Customs had boarded his yacht, Windrose, which had been towed into port in the Scilly Isles after calling for help. At the time what had occurred on the yacht was a mystery, and the authorities weren't talking. Now the mystery appears to have been solved.

The yacht, according to the Border Force, had drugs with a street value of around £20 million on board.

The Border Force boarded the 11m (36ft) Windrose on Monday 17 June after it was towed into St Mary's quayside, Isles of Scilly, by the Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI).

The solo sailor, a 62-year-old Dutch national, fell from the mast during the time the officers were on board. They had been on board for around two hours before he climbed the mast. He was airlifted to hospital but died later from his injuries.

At the time St Mary's Harbourmaster Dale Clark described the incident as a 'very sad, shocking tragedy' and dismissed reports that there had been a chase before the fall. It nevertheless, to this cruising sailor, it seems a strange thing for a sailor to do - climb the mast - when there are customs officers on board.

After the sailor's death the vessel was taken to Newlyn in Cornwall, where a search found 200kgs of the Class A drug cocaine.

A Border Force spokesman has since said: 'Following a search of the yacht, Windrose a substantial quantity of cocaine, approximately 200 kilos, was found.

'It is estimated that the drugs could have had a potential street value of around £20million.

'The drugs have now been removed from the Windrose and taken to a secure location for further analysis. An investigation is ongoing.'

The incident has been referred to the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC), which investigates public bodies with policing powers, which is yet to decide if a full investigation is necessary.

The solo sailor is believed to have sailed into United Kingdom waters from Lagos, Portugal in the steel-hulled yacht.
InSunSport - NZBakewell-White Yacht DesignBarz Optics - San Juan Worlds Best Eyewear

Related Articles

Rio 2016 - The Qualification Games - Part 2
Yachting NZ's refusal to nominate in three classes won in the first round of 2016 Olympic Qualification is unprecedented Yachting New Zealand's refusal to nominate in three classes won in the first round of 2016 Olympic Qualification is without precedent. Subject to Appeal, the Kiwis have signaled that they will reject 30% of the positions gained in the ISAF World Sailing Championships in Santander in 2014.
Posted on 22 May
Gladwell's Line - World Sailing changes tack after IOC windshift
Over the past year, we've given the International Sailing Federation (now re-badged as World Sailing) a bit of stick Over the past year, we've given the International Sailing Federation (now re-badged as World Sailing) a bit of stick. Every blow well earned over issues such as the pollution at Rio, the Israeli exclusion abomination plus a few more. But now World Sailing is getting it right.
Posted on 21 May
Rio 2016 - The Qualification Games - Part 1
Antipodean selection shenanigans aside, the Qualification system for the Rio Olympics appears to be achieving its goals Antipodean selection shenanigans aside, the Qualification system for the Rio Olympics appears to be achieving goals set in the Olympic Commission report of 2010. Around 64 countries are expected to be represented in Rio de Janeiro in August. That is a slight increase on Qingdao and Weymouth, but more importantly a full regional qualification system is now in place
Posted on 19 May
Taming the beast-a conversation with Stuart Meurer of Parker Hannifin
While AC72 cats were fast, they difficult to control, so Oracle partnered with Parker Hannifin to innovate a better way. If you watched videos of the AC72s racing in the 34th America’s Cup (2013), you’re familiar with the mind-boggling speeds that are possible when wingsail-powered catamarans switch from displacement sailing to foiling mode. While foiling is fast, there’s no disguising the platform’s inherent instability. Now, Oracle Team USA has teamed up with Parker Hannifin to innovate a better way.
Posted on 18 May
From foiling Moths to Olympic starting lines-a Q&A with Bora Gulari
Bora Gulari’s is representing the USA at the Rio 2016 Olympics in the Nacra 17 class, along with teammate Louisa Chafee. Bora Gulari (USA) has made a strong name for himself within high-performance sailing circles, with wins at the 2009 and 2013 Moth Worlds. In between, he broke the 30-knort barrier and was the 2009 US SAILING Rolex Yachtsman of the Year. His latest challenge is representing the USA at the Rio 2016 Olympics in the Nacra 17 class as skipper, along with his teammate Louisa Chafee.
Posted on 12 May
Concern for Zika at Rio Olympics is now deadly serious
Alphabet soup is one description that has thus far not been used for either Guanabara Bay, Alphabet soup is one description that has thus far not been used for either Guanabara Bay, or the Rio Olympics. Many others have, and they were apt, but things have changed. So here now we have a situation where one man, Associate Professor Amir Attaran, who does have a more than decent string of letters after his name, is bringing nearly as many facts to bear as references at the article's end
Posted on 12 May
The importance of being Alive
Since buying the stunningly pretty Reichel-Pugh canting keel 66-footer, and re-naming her Alive, Since buying the stunningly pretty Reichel-Pugh canting keel 66-footer, and re-naming her Alive, the team have lined up for a lot of things, won plenty and nabbed a record, as well. She’s presently in a yard in the Philippines having a minor refit in readiness for the Australian season. It will commence with the upcoming Brisbane to Keppel and then head sharply into this year’s Hobart.
Posted on 10 May
Zhik - The brand born of a notion, not its history
here is probably every reason that ocean rhymes with notion. Zhik’s tagline is officially marketed as Made For Water There is probably every reason that ocean rhymes with notion. Zhik’s tagline has been officially marketed as Made For Water, and this is precisely what the company has done for the last eight years before the succinct and apt strapline came from out of R&D and into mainstream visibility.
Posted on 8 May
Shape of next Volvo Ocean Race revealed at Southern Spars - Part 1
Southern Spars has been confirmed as the supplier of spars for the 2017-18 Volvo Ocean Race. In mid-April, Race Director, Jack Lloyd and Stopover Manager Richard Mason outlined the changes expected for the 40,000nm Race during a tour of Southern Spars 10,000sq metre specialist spar construction facility. A total of up to seven boats is expected to enter, but time is running out for the construction of any new boats.
Posted on 3 May
Sailing in the Olympics beyond 2016 - A double Olympic medalist's view
Bruce Kendall takes a look at what he believes Sailing needs to do to survive beyond the 2016 Olympics. Gold and Bronze medalist and multiple world boardsailing/windsurfer champion, Bruce Kendall takes a look at what he believes Sailing needs to do to survive beyond the 2016 Olympics. A key driver is the signalled intention by the International Olympic Committee to select a basket of events that will be contested.
Posted on 29 Apr