SPANISH officials delayed trucks of British aid that was bound for the hurricane hit Caribbean at the Gibraltar border.
According to The Sun, five truckloads of disaster relief from the Department for International Development were held up and searched before they were loaded onto HMS Ocean.
After spending two days collecting aid, the ship left Gibraltar hours later than planned to make its way to the devastated British Virgin Islands and Anguilla on Tuesday night.
Instead of nodding the vehicles through, Spanish customs officials combed over 199 pallets of buckets and hygiene kits.
The aid trucks arrived from Alicante at the border on Monday night and were searched on Tuesday morning.
Meanwhile, another DFID van carrying water purification tablets that was driven from Essex to Spain got lost on the way as the Polish driver had to ask for directions.
A government source said: “The trucks were due to arrive on Tuesday morning but were held up at customs for hours and only arrived at lunchtime.”
They added: “There is often a go slow by the border patrols, clearly trying to make a point – it would have been immediately clear that this was aid, but it still took hours to get through.”
A DFID official has said the searches were ‘random’ and not politically motivated.