Italian navy authorities have opened an investigation after the discovery of 700 kg illegal cigarettes in one of its vessels that was returning from a mission in Libya aimed at helping Libyan coastguard stop migrants to take to the sea.
The probe according to the website of TV program Le Iene, has been launched in connection with the discovery of 3,600 packets weighing 700 kg, in Caprera ship; a vessel operating under the Italian navy.
The vessel had spent three and a half months in the port of Tripoli on an assistance mission with the Libyan coastguard to intercept and rescue migrant boats in the Mediterranean, the website said.
A complete search of the ship upon its return to the southern Italian base of Brindisi in mid-July revealed the presence of the contraband haul of cigarettes.
The navy, in a statement Wednesday, said legal action and internal investigations have been launched.