British Fugitive Arrested
Brian Charrington, one of Europe’s top 10 most wanted criminals, was arrested in Spain in connection with a transatlantic cocaine-smuggling ring, according to Reuters.
Charrington, a Briton, is a former car dealer, but has been living a luxurious life in Spain with his son. He had 10 homes, multiple high-end cars and six boats in one area of Alicante alone.
Spain is a popular destination for British fugitives, as until 1985 the two countries did not have an extradition treaty. According to the Serious Organized Crime Agency (SOCA), since 2007 52 of 65 British fugitives known to be in Spain have been arrested.
As a result of this operation, 13 people in two countries were arrested for smuggling drugs into Spain to sell across Europe. Police seized 485 pounds of cocaine from an apartment and bank accounts and goods worth roughly $6.5 million have been frozen or seized, according to the BBC.
This operation is part of a three-year investigation by Spanish authorities with police in Venezuela, Colombia, Argentina, and Britain, and aided by AMERIPOL, an international police force that works in the US and 19 Latin and Caribbean states.
Venezuela shares a long, largely un-policed border with Colombia and has become a transit point for Colombian cocaine to get to the international market.
Charrington’s son was also taken into custody in Spain. His girlfriend, who has not been identified, was arrested in Venezuela while organizing a cocaine shipment.