The Department of Justice has charged former professional boxer Goran Gogic, 43, with trafficking over 20 tons of cocaine that was worth more than $1 billion through United States ports. Gogic was arrested on Sunday after being indicted by a grand jury in New York, according to a press release from the Department of Justice.
Prosecutors called the seizure "one of the largest drug seizures in United States history."
Gogic, who is from Montenegro, attempted to board a flight at Miami International Airport before he was arrested. He was charged with three counts of violating the federal Maritime Drug Law Enforcement Act and one count of conspiracy. Gogic faces a mandatory 10-year prison sentence and could receive as much as life in prison if he's convicted on all charges, CBS News reported.
The charges are related to three seizures of cocaine, including when 19.8 tons of the drug were seized on a cargo ship headed to the Netherlands while it was docked at Philadelphia's Packer Avenue Marine Terminal back in 2019. At the time, Ivan Durasevic, who was the ship's second mate, and Fonofaavae Tiasaga were the only two people arrested.
Prosecutors allege that Gogic and all involved parties used "meticulous planning" in order to transport cocaine to Europe from Colombia through United States ports utilizing cargo ships.
"Members of the conspiracy loaded the commercial cargo ships at night near the coast and ports, working with crewmembers who would hoist loads of cocaine from speedboats that approached the ships at multiple points along their route," prosecutors stated.
Cocaine was allegedly loaded using nets and the ship's cranes. Once onboard, prosecutors claim crew members would hide the drugs inside shipping containers. Gogic is believed to have coordinated the operation with several other people, including Colombian drug traffickers and European dockworkers.
Gogic was an active boxer from 2001 to 2012 and accumulated a career record of 21-4 during that time.