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Anger after a dozen 'narco-boats' spotted just metres from the shore on the Costa del Sol
Crime

Anger after a dozen 'narco-boats' spotted just metres from the shore on the Costa del Sol

One of the town mayors has called on the authorities to do more to stop the vessels, which are often used by organised crime gangs

Irene Quirante

Malaga

Thursday, 28 March 2024, 11:47

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A dozen 'narco-boats' - usually used by organised crime gangs - were anchored at sea and perfectly visible for the entire day off Sabinillas beach in Manilva on the Costa del Sol on Wednesday (27 March).

Manilva mayor José Manuel Fernández criticised yesterday's scenes and told SUR the vessels often used by serious criminals could be seen in the water off the coast for the whole day on 27 March. "They were anchored on the coast and perfectly visible," he said.

Last week there were also several boats of this type, approximately six, off the coastline near Casares, he added. In both cases the same problem arose, he said: there were no authorities around to pursue them.

Fernández said the presence of the boats not only seriously damages the image of the town, but also poses a danger if there is a possibility people may disembark from them. The mayor urgently requested the government sub-delegation in Malaga province to provide the means to better deal with the drug and human trafficking problem.

Fernández pointed out that neither the Local Police nor the Guardia Civil have maritime or land resources, which is why it is necessary to provide extra reinforcements to "put an end to this scourge". Even more so on dates as important as Easter week, he added, when there is a large presence of tourists and people out and about.

This is not the only spot on the coast of Malaga where these vessels were sighted on Wednesday. The 112-Andalucía emergency line confirmed operators received several phone calls about 4.20pm alerting them to the presence of a narco-boat in the area of Los Llanos in the municipality of Estepona. The scene, according to witnesses, was quite dramatic as it was only some 150 metres from the shore.

Andalusian coastline

Spain's tax agency and customs surveillance service, in coordination with the Guardia Civil, has carried out various operations in recent days as part of the fight against criminal organisations dedicated to drug trafficking. The operations were centred on the Andalusian coast, especially along the coast of Cadiz and the Guadalquivir riverbed, which resulted in the arrest of five people.

A total of six boats were seized which were allegedly used for logistical support in the drug trafficking organisation. Some 400 litres of fuel intended to supply the bigger of the vessels were seized.

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