National Police officers in Spain, in a joint operation with the French national police authorities, have arrested seven people who made up a criminal gang smuggling cannabis in Moroccan lorries bound for France. A total of 247 kilos of marijuana buds, almost 40,000 euros and a firearm have been seized.
The operation began last November when investigators collected information about suspects living in Benalmádena and Fuengirola allegedly engaged in drug trafficking, mainly hashish and marijuana, bound for France.
The investigation located a property used as a 'nursery', where the suspects hid a van and a car used to transport the drugs. The suspects would make various trips to collect drugs and used the house to prepare them for shipment to France. The gang were also seen changing the registration plates of the vehicles before each trip.
In mid-November, the criminal gang travelled to Malaga where they made contact with a Moroccan lorry that would later head to France.
It wasn't until mid-December that the time was right to move in and arrest the gang. The suspects were transporting the drugs in a lorry when it was intercepted by police. Officers found three bags inside the cab and another four in a hole on the underside of the trailer bed, containing vacuum-packed marijuana buds weighing approximately 165 kilograms.
A search was carried out of the properties and investigators found close to 40,000 euros in cash, two devices used to find geolocation equipment, several hashish pills, German and French vehicle registration plates, and various documents that pointed to regular shipments of several hundred kilos of hashish and cannabis.
A search of the properties used to grow the drugs, located in Seville and Malaga provices, found a firearm, a small indoor marijuana plantation and various documentation relating to previous drug shipments.
The investigation was carried out by officers of the Spanish National Police force and the French National Police within the framework of Empact, the European Multidisciplinary Platform against Criminal Threats.
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