Scotlands ‘Mr Bigs’ captured in one of Europe’s Biggest International Crime Stings

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£5.1m in cash seized in Operation Venetic . image credit: Metropolitan Police

AN international crime sting operation has rounded up several Scottish household names in a major crackdown on the EncroChat phone encryption network.

Authorities managed to access Encrochat, an encrypted platform used by 60,000 people worldwide, the National Crime Agency has “successfully penetrated” a top-secret communications system used by criminals to trade drugs and guns, said a spokesman.

“The NCA worked with forces across Europe on the UK’s biggest and most significant law enforcement operation.” Some very major crime figures were among over 800 Europe-wide arrests after messages on EncroChat were intercepted and decoded.

The secret military-grade encrypted communication system commonly used by organised criminals trading in drugs and guns has been hacked by law enforcement in one of the biggest operations of its kind.

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Thousands of officers from the National Crime Agency, regional crime squads, and every police force in the UK have been involved in a massive international sting that was launched in April.

So far more than 700 people have been arrested, including even police officers and law enforcement officials, and drugs worth £80 million, 77 guns, and more than £54 million in cash has been seized.

Investigations are ongoing and further arrests are expected across Europe.


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