A Xepolite Free Trader was a type of starship utilized by the Xepolites during the late 24th century for hauling freight. These ships were built especially for weapons smuggling, notably for the Cardassians, as they had hulls that were composed of a sensor-reflective material that prevented scanning and were capable of the maximum speed of warp 9.8.

When Kira Nerys inquired as to how the Cardassian Central Command getting weapons into the Demilitarized Zone in mid-2370, Gul Dukat guessed that it was most likely by way of a Xepolite Free Trader.

Shortly thereafter, Commander Sisko and Dukat, aboard the USS Mekong, encountered a Xepolite Free Trader near the DMZ that they suspected of illegally transporting weapons.

The Mekong's presence was ignored until the runabout fired its phasers across the ship's bow. The ship's commander, Hetman Drofo Awa, denied the claim that his ship was hauling weapons, and claimed it was in fact hauling five kilotons of regreein wheat husks. Awa refused to let Sisko aboard for an inspection, noting that any attempt to board his vessel would be viewed as an act of piracy. Dukat then intervened and stated that if he did not lower his shields and allow Sisko aboard his ship, his ship would be destroyed. Awa complied and following the inspection, he followed the runabout back to Deep Space 9, where he was to offload his cargo and sign a confession of his actions. (DS9: "The Maquis, Part II")

This vessel's designation was initially described in dialog by Dukat, and later identified in the script notes at the time of this vessel's appearance. The term was also used by
Likewise, the ship was called by O'Brien and the script by the more generic term "Xepolite ship".
For more information on history of this studio model, please see: DS9 studio models.
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