Friday, 7 July 2023, 17:31
On Monday 26 June, chosen to coincide with International Day against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking (also known as World Drug Day), there was a meeting of the board for Spain's Anti-Drug Prosecutor's Office in Malaga. Their decision to meet in this province was deliberate. As Fernando Bentabol, the prosecutor in charge of combating narco crime in Malaga pointed out, it is the Costa del Sol where "most of the large trafficking organisations have set up and, therefore, it's from here that most drugs are run across Spain.
Malaga's borders, its proximity to Morocco and its global reach, make the province one of the nerve centres for the drug traffickers' trade. They deliberately choose this location to do business while also evading the judicial authorities in their countries of origin. The key, as Bentabol said, is to catch the big bosses of these organisations who "do not handle the drugs", which makes it especially difficult to gather evidence to stand up in court that will lead to a conviction.
Similarly, he emphasised how essential it is to hit the leaders of these networks where it hurts the most, right in the economic heart of the criminal gangs. In this regard, the Anti-Drug Prosecutor for Andalucía, Ana Tárrago, indicated that police investigations are increasingly directed at the money-laundering aspects of the trade to dismantle the economic base of these networks.
More sophisticated means of investigation, more human resources and improved procedures, a more agile response and even greater collaboration between the judicial authorities and all relevant policing and state security units. These are some of the measures that the Chief Anti-Drug Prosecutor, Rosa Ana Morán, called for in Malaga to give the officers involved in bringing down organised crime the advantage they need.
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