Criminal organisation connected to thirty robberies dismantled with sixteen arrests

by Lorraine Williamson
Sixteen arrests
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MURCIA – Sixteen arrests have taken place in Murcia for the crimes of robbery with violence and intimidation, robbery with force, vehicle theft, illegal human trafficking, drug trafficking and receiving.

Seventeen house searches were carried out in the municipality of Torre Pacheco (Murcia). As a result of the searches, a detonating revolver with ammunition, 28 vehicles, bladed weapons, €26,000, 600 packs of tobacco, jewellery, tools, marijuana, ecstasy, gloves and balaclavas have been seized.

The investigation is still open and could involve a total of 80 crimes

The Guardia Civil, within the framework of Operation Game Rol, has dismantled a criminal organisation. The organisation was dedicated to committing violent robberies in public establishments and homes in the Comarca del Campo de Cartagena. In total, there have been sixteen arrests for the following crimes;

  • robbery with force
  • robbery with violence and intimidation
  • vehicle theft
  • illegal human trafficking
  • drug trafficking
  • reception

The investigation remains open due to suspicions of the participation of the detainees in a total of 80 crimes.

Operation Game Rol

Since August of last year, police were aware of a series of robberies committed in homes, gambling halls and tobacconists. Due to their regularity, geographical proximity and modus operandi, police became aware of the existence of an experienced criminal group.

The first robbery with violence and intimidation took place in a recreational room in Roldán, a district of Torre Pacheco. The Guardia Civil recovered a stolen van that had been abandoned in a rural area after committing the assault.

From this robbery, many more followed. They took place in pharmacies, restaurants, tobacconists, supermarkets, companies and homes. Moreover, the public were very concerned and it generated alarm among the residents of the region.

The visual inspections carried out determined that the primary objective was cash. The gang even stole the cash registers and tobacco machines, which were then abandoned in nearby areas.

Surveillance devices

The investigators established a series of surveillance devices in the local areas with the purpose of preventing future robberies and thus detaining suspects.

In addition, they compiled security images, victim testimonies, and analysis of the information obtained. In this way, the modus operandi, the ramifications of the alleged gang and its main nucleus, which was located in the pachequera districts of Roldán and Lo Ferro, were determined.

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Searches and sixteen arrests

On March 7, police arrested 11 people and carried out 15 searches at various homes in Torre Pacheco, La Puebla-Cartagena and the districts of Roldán and Lo Ferro.

The following day, a further five members who were hiding in two other buildings in Roldán were also arrested.

Two of the detainees are also accused of a crime of human trafficking, by carrying out fraudulent registrations and favouring the irregular entry of migrants, providing them with transportation and accommodation.

Criminal hierarchy

The criminal organisation was perfectly hierarchical, and each member specialised in a specific task. Before committing the robberies, they selected their objective, they found out the routines of the workers, the hours of greatest collection of the establishments and they chose the escape routes. The leader selected the most experienced people in robberies, between 20 and 35 years of age, to commit them.

The investigation discovered that the assaults were carried out mainly using vehicles stolen days before and acting in groups of at least four people, to ensure the success of the operation.

Part of the criminal structure was also dedicated to introducing stolen items to the market. These people were essential for the criminal group since they provided economic benefits a few days after committing the robberies.

Another of the ramifications of the group materialised the retail sale of drugs among the members of the criminal organisation themselves.

Operation Game Rol remains open while other crimes are being investigated.

Also read: Police arrest 15 after violent youth stree fight

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