THE Guardia Civil have had a busy week, after participating in a joint operation with Romanian Police and the United States Drug Enforcement Administration in order to pull the plug on a trafficking network which aimed to distribute 2,500 kilos of cocaine around Europe.
The narcotics had arrived to the Port of Constanta in Romania, which had been smuggled from South America in false-bottomed containers on ships transporting bananas, with four Lithuanians and one Colombian, who had travelled from Medellin to oversee the shipment, arrested during the bust.
Guardia Civil detectives had been alerted of the plot in January, when international colleagues gave them the heads up about a criminal gang that was operating out of Romania but appeared to be managed from Spain.
The suspected kingpin was a 44-year-old Marbella resident with dual Dutch and Moroccan nationality, who owns a string of real estate businesses in Spain, Morocco and Dubai in the United Arab Emirates.
Residing in a luxury urbanisation, the man and his home were thus placed under “discreet surveillance” for a number of months, during which a plethora of information regarding the shady syndicate and their contraband cargo was gleaned.
The suspected top dog was collared at Malaga airport as he attempted to flee to Morocco following the sortie in Romania.