Brevard County sheriff’s deputies retrieved the large block of powdered narcotic about 11 a.m. ET Friday after it washed ashore just south of Melbourne Beach. Some media reports estimated it to be about 50 pounds, nearly 23 kilos.
The cocaine — or coke as it's commonly known — was found on the beach in the 3000 block of State Road A1A by an unidentified beachcomber, not far from where a 45-foot sailboat from the Florida Keys — the Cuki — ran aground following Hurricane Irma's rampage through the state.
It was unclear where the sea-faring package might have come from. Authorities say such drugs typically either fall off a boat or are tossed overboard. The block may have traveled a long distance, possibly battered by the rough waves that have pounded Brevard County’s shoreline in recent weeks.
It was not immediately known what street value the cocaine might be or if it was rendered worthless and waterlogged by its journey over the sea. According to Business Insider, the price of cocaine has been relatively stable in the U.S for a couple of decades, at about $150 per pure gram.
“You would think that South Florida would get the cocaine washing up — not middle, or central Florida. It’s a surprise,” Richard Threlfall, who was visiting the beach, told WFTV-TV.
It is not the first time such a package has washed ashore along the Atlantic coastline in east central Florida. Bales of marijuana — known as square groupers — have also made landfall along the county's 72-mile-shoreline from time to time. In recent years, a sprinkling of other unintended spills from cargo ships and other vessels have brought cans of coffee and other items.
On Friday, the Sheriff's Office immediately removed the package. The Sheriff’s Office has not yet responded to inquiries about the cocaine or what might happen to it.