A crack unit of Guardia Civil officers from the Costa Blanca has masterminded a hugely ambitious global operation leading to the arrest of more than 100 men and the seizure of 10 tons of explosives, more than one million cartridges, 11,000 rifles and 100 tonnes of drugs.
Codenamed Operation Urca, the massive undertaking saw the Alicante Guardia Civil’s Organised Crime squad at the helm of an international team comprised of Europol, French, Italian, Greek and American agents.
Working secretly for more than a year the multi-national team revealed the fruits of their labour on Tuesday October 11, two weeks after the Alicante Guardia Civil dealt a severe blow to a shady terrorist network operating across the Mediterranean.
Presented by Lieutenant Colonel Javier Rogero, the conclusion of Operation Urca makes for breathtaking reading.
Since 2015 the Alicante-led team have intercepted seven ships loaded with drugs and guns coming from Turkey but sailing flags from Bolivia, Panama and Togo. Some were destined for the Libyan Daesh stronghold of Misrata and others for Morocco.
On board were huge quantities of hashish, weapons and even 1.2 million Captagon pills, an amphetamine taken by the terrorists who struck Paris last year and frequently taken by Syrian fighters before going into battle.
The Guardia Civil seized some three-fifths of the total, making use of their extensive Mediterranean counter-terrorism and anti-trafficking experience.
Col Rogero revealed that they had been combating an elusive narco-terrorist network which shipped drugs and weaponry around the Med, exchanging guns from Turkey for drugs in Morocco and shipping explosives to jihadi cells stationed around the coast.