ANDALUCIA – Spanish police arrested 100 suspected members of a gang accused of smuggling drugs in speedboats from Morocco to Spain.
According to the Guardia Civil website, they dismantled a drug network distributing large amounts of hashish and marijuana throughout Europe. 100 people were arrested and more than five tons of hashish and 230 kilos of marijuana buds have been seized. In addition, a simulated rifle, a taser gun, as well as 5 vehicles including two trucks, navigation, computer and communication equipment, and abundant documentation have been intervened.
Raids in southern Spain and France
Raids were carried out in southern Spain and in France. Spanish police said the extensive organised crime network had a “powerful infrastructure”. This enabled them to carry out criminal work “all over the Andalusia coast”. And there was even a dedicated team to ensure the speedboats were always fuelled up and ready to go.
“One branch of the organisation launched the boats down the Guadalquivir River. Another sent drugs to Europe in trucks from a warehouse located in Dos Hermanas. And a third carried out refuelling tasks from marinas located between La Línea and Manilva,” the Guardia Civil statement said.
The investigation began when it became known that an organisation was launching boats down the Guadalquivir River. The clan known as MONPARLET, was also dedicated to logistical tasks of concealment of high-speed boats. The police tweeted a video of the raids.
— Sandro Pozzi (@sandro_pozzi) April 3, 2021
Police discovered the organisation was also launching the boats between the Sevillian towns of Isla Mayor and Puebla del Río. This is a marsh area and therefore difficult to access from land.
Furthermore, several warehouses in industrial estates on the outskirts of Seville, served to hide the boats while repair and maintenance work was carried out.
The hashish route to Morocco
The police report continued to state that one branch of the organisation was dedicated to petaqueo (supplying fuel to the semi-rigid). These are powerful boats with three or four engines that require a lot of fuel. This branch had small recreational boats that departed from the ports of La Atunara, Sotogrande (both in the province of Cádiz) and La Duquesa (Málaga) to supply fuel, food and, if necessary, make crew changes and thus start over the hashish route to Morocco.
During the operation, the agents have seized 1,170 kilos of hashish in Matalascañas (Huelva), 3,240 kilos in Adra (Almería) and 330 kilos in La Línea (Cádiz), so it is worth noting the powerful infrastructure they had to carry out caches all over the coasts of Andalusia.
They transported drugs to Europe hidden in trucks with fruits.
Another branch, of the same organization, transported the drugs that were brought into the peninsula to Europe. For this they used trucks that they hid in a polygon in the Sevillian town of Dos Hermanas. The drug was usually hidden between fruits alternating hashish with marijuana batches.
As a result of these investigations, apprehensions were made in these trucks, with the support of French Customs, 105 kilograms of marijuana were seized in Dax. In Spain two more trucks: one in Badajoz where 300 kilos of hashish and 125 kilos of marijuana were seized in Irún (Guipúzcoa).