Spain Dismantles Cocaine Trafficking Operation, Arrests 7
Spanish police reported Monday the dismantling of two cocaine processing plants, in an operation that resulted in seven arrests and the seizure of more than 800 kilos of drugs before they could reach the streets.
The investigation, which has been ongoing since 2020, centred around a drug manufacturing organization, based out of the province of Barcelona, that trafficked its product all over the country.
An initial seizure and a pair of arrests in late 2020 revealed to law enforcement that the group was comprised of Dominican nationals; further probing, however, uncovered that the traffickers’ entire operation was being run domestically out of Barcelona.
In August the following year, national police officers surveilled one of their principal suspects engaged with another person of interest, who was immediately detained and caught carrying several kilos of cocaine ready for distribution.
A search of his home resulted in yet another cocaine seizure; large quantities of various monies, as well assets believed to be acquired illegally were also taken into evidence.
Later on, authorities hit the jackpot after following a series of raids across five small towns in Barcelona.
In the town of Alella, agents uncovered one of the sources of the whole operation: a laboratory where the traffickers managed the processing and packaging of their cocaine enterprise.
And in Montga, a town of less than 12,000 people, police shut down two nurseries where the traffickers’ coca plants were cultivated before being shipped to the lab.
These raids also resulted in the seizure of just under 500 kilos of cocaine, large quantities of chemical precursors used to process the drugs, as well as several pieces of equipment used to facilitate the whole operation, including moulds, dyes, and a hydraulic press.
Most importantly, however, investigators managed to ascertain the traffickers’ brand from the captured equipment. This allowed police to link all the seizures together and to properly identify their drugs in future raids.
One final raid in the town of El Masnou uncovered another cocaine processing plant and drug laboratory, as well 292 kilos of cocaine and well over 1,000 litres of chemical substances.
All together, police seized over 836 kilos of cocaine and 3,450 litres of chemical materials, and dismantled an entire drug trafficking network from cultivation, to processing, and finally to distribution.