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LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM - APRIL 10: The Honourable Artillery Company fire a gun salute at The Tower of London on April 10, 2021 in London, United Kingdom.  The Death Gun Salute will be fired at 1200 marking the death of His Royal Highness, The Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh. Across the country and the globe saluting batteries will fire 41 rounds, 1 round at the start of each minute, for 40 minutes. Gun salutes are customarily fired, both on land and at sea, as a sign of respect or welcome. The Chief of the Defence Staff, General Sir Nicholas Carter, said "His Royal Highness has been a great friend, inspiration and role model for the Armed Forces and he will be sorely missed." (Photo by Chris Jackson/Getty Images)
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Britain's Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, in his role as Captain General, Royal Marines, attends a Parade to mark the finale of the 1664 Global Challenge on the Buckingham Palace Forecourt in central London on August 2, 2017.  
After a lifetime of public service by the side of his wife Queen Elizabeth II, Prince Philip finally retires on August 2, 2017,at the age of 96. The Duke of Edinburgh attended a parade of Royal Marines at Buckingham Palace, the last of 22,219 solo public engagements since she ascended to the throne in 1952.
 / AFP PHOTO / POOL / HANNAH MCKAY        (Photo credit should read HANNAH MCKAY/AFP/Getty Images)
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Britain's Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, in his role as Captain General, Royal Marines, attends a Parade to mark the finale of the 1664 Global Challenge on the Buckingham Palace Forecourt in central London on August 2, 2017. After a lifetime of public service by the side of his wife Queen Elizabeth II, Prince Philip finally retires on August 2, 2017,at the age of 96. The Duke of Edinburgh attended a parade of Royal Marines at Buckingham Palace, the last of 22,219 solo public engagements since she ascended to the throne in 1952. / AFP PHOTO / POOL / HANNAH MCKAY (Photo credit should read HANNAH MCKAY/AFP/Getty Images)
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This picture shows the interior of Palais Vivienne apartment, owned by French collector Pierre-Jean Chalencon, on April 5, 2021. - The lawyer of Pierre-Jean Chalencon, owner of the "Palais Vivienne", implicated by a report from French channel M6 for clandestine dinners in Paris, told AFP on April 4th that his client was only "joking" when he declared ministers participated in such meals. Paris prosecutor Remy Heitz opened a criminal investigation on alleged dinners banned during the pandemic. - RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE (Photo by Thomas COEX / AFP) / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE (Photo by THOMAS COEX/AFP via Getty Images)
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This picture shows the interior of Palais Vivienne apartment, owned by French collector Pierre-Jean Chalencon, on April 5, 2021. - The lawyer of Pierre-Jean Chalencon, owner of the "Palais Vivienne", implicated by a report from French channel M6 for clandestine dinners in Paris, told AFP on April 4th that his client was only "joking" when he declared ministers participated in such meals. Paris prosecutor Remy Heitz opened a criminal investigation on alleged dinners banned during the pandemic. - RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE (Photo by Thomas COEX / AFP) / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE (Photo by THOMAS COEX/AFP via Getty Images)
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(CNN) —  

A middle-aged couple in Austria received quite a surprise one morning when a parcel that was supposed to contain dresses bought online from a retailer in the Netherlands turned out to contain nearly 25,000 ecstasy tablets.

The unnamed Austrian woman, 58, mistook the purple pills for decorative stones, police said, but on closer inspection her husband, 59, realized they were probably stimulants and returned the package to their local post office in Linz, Upper Austria.

The ecstasy tablets, pictured, were intended for Scotland.
Upper Austria Police
The ecstasy tablets, pictured, were intended for Scotland.

“The originally planned cozy breakfast was quickly over and to the horror of the couple, it turned out that, though one of the packages did contain the two dresses, the second however had 24,800 Ecstasy tablets worth about €500,000,” said a statement from Upper Austria police.

“The (post) office was equally astonished, which is why the police, and subsequently the narcotics department of the City Police Command Linz, was informed.”

According to Austrian police, the 24,800 pills were worth around €500,000 ($550,000), though Police Scotland told CNN that the likely UK value of the drugs was around £165,000 ($205,000).

The Netherlands is one of the world’s largest drugs producers and earlier this year Dutch customs officials reported that the amount of ecstasy and amphetamines being sent in the post had tripled from 137 kilograms (302 pounds) in 2016 to 460 kilograms in 2018.

Following an investigation by Linz’s drugs squad it transpired that the package was intended for Scotland. Police Scotland and the UK’s National Crime Agency (NCA) are jointly investigating the matter.

An NCA spokesperson told CNN: “This is a live investigation and enquiries are ongoing.”

In July, police searched premises in Glasgow, Scotland but no arrests were made.

Additional reporting by Christian Streib.