Spanish National Police dismantles the most active clandestine anabolic and hormone laboratory in Europe

Agents of the National Police have dismantled the most active clandestine anabolic and hormone laboratory in Europe in Valdepeñas (Ciudad Real).

With an annual production capacity of about 1,000 kilograms of prohibited drugs, the dismantled organization was not only dedicated to the manufacture, storage and distribution of illegal drugs through cells distributed throughout Spain, but also to drug trafficking. They had more than 30 different types of products and used two own brands, in addition to preparing drug mixtures in syringes to be administered directly. 21 people have been arrested and about twenty searches have been carried out in homes and commercial premises in which three million doses of finished product have been intervened in addition to 65 kilograms of active principle of various medicines, with which they could be manufactured more than 38 million doses.

The operation has been carried out in permanent contact with the AEPSAD –Spanish Agency for Health Protection in Sports- who has provided vital information and advice for the successful completion of the investigation.

Shipping of anabolics by parcel or hand delivery

The investigation began in December 2018 when the agents intervened in La Línea de la Concepción (Cádiz) a total of 500 boxes of anabolics of the same brand. After carrying out the appropriate checks, the researchers determined the legal non-existence of said laboratory as well as the serious health risk that its consumption could produce. 

With all this information, the pertinent investigations were initiated to determine its origin, taking the agents to the municipality of Valdepeñas (Ciudad Real) and specifically to a person who had previously been linked to drug trafficking. As a result of the investigations, the agents were able to link this man with other people in the same area who were also engaged, both in the sale and shipment of drugs through different parcel companies, and in delivering them by hand to others. consumers. Likewise, the agents verified the huge volume of illegal and health-damaging medicines that they were distributing, and the security measures they were adopting to avoid being discovered.

A garage and a floor as a factory and warehouse for medicines

With the investigations advanced, the agents managed to identify the people who were in charge of both the manufacture and storage of the drugs, as well as giving the precise instructions to their lieutenants to distribute their products and contact the different cells of the organization in various parts of the Spanish geography. Likewise, the group leader and his partner had two places where they manufactured and stored all the medicines, a garage and an apartment in Valdepeñas (Ciudad Real). In the garage the tablets were made without any sanitary measure and they had a pill-making machine that had been modified so that it could produce more pills due to the high demand they had. On the other hand,

To hinder police investigation, the organization used straw men who periodically changed. These, in exchange for a small reward, were in charge of receiving the excipients, material and active principle necessary for the manufacture of the medicines, in addition to taking charge of the commercial work and distribution of the products to the different cells located in different points of the Spanish geography so that they in turn were resold. These places of redistribution of illegal drugs were strategically selected in terms of their location and for the most part they masked their real activity, the distribution of these drugs, under the guise of legal businesses such as nutrition stores or gyms.

She claimed to be a retired physician-practitioner to inject “potions”

The organization’s main distribution points were located in Castellón, Málaga, Almería and La Línea de la Concepción (Cádiz). In the latter, they used two gyms in the area to contact potential interested persons and sell them the products. The mother of the owner of one of the gyms collaborated with this group, who claimed to be a retired physician-practitioner and was in charge of making “potions” or “combos” of drugs, both anabolic and otherwise, to later inject them into clients. . They had a clientele network that ranged from users derived from gyms interested in injecting hormones and anabolic products, to other types of users who came to it for aesthetic treatments or injected one of its combos for pain treatment . 

In Malaga the same method was used as in Valdepeñas, regarding the use of lieutenants for the reception and distribution of illegal material. In addition, they also had a nutrition business, with the appearance of legality, which was used as a platform for promotion and contact with potential clients. This same scheme was also used by the cells of Almería and Castellón, who also had a nutrition store.

The organization was distributing more than 800 kilograms of illegal drugs – anabolics, peptides and hormones – annually, between those that were manufactured in the clandestine laboratory and those that were imported. In terms of its way of operating, it had two clear lines of action, one in relation to manufacturing and the other to distribution. 

Complex treatment and transformation system 

After importing the active ingredients directly from China, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom, they acquired the excipients and other necessary products through the Internet and all of them were subjected to a complex treatment and transformation system whose final product was both anabolic, hormones and peptides. Once the product was manufactured, they gave it its own identity, naming it one of their two brands, and distributed it in two ways; by hand delivery, or through a dispensing system through lieutenants to distributors throughout Spain.

Finally, the arrest and imputation of 21 people have been achieved and 20 searches have been carried out in homes and commercial premises linked to the organization Ciudad Real (6), Cádiz (6), Almería (2), Castellón (2) and Málaga (4 ). The agents intervened, 3,000,000 doses of finished product, cardboard for the preparation of the products, vials, caps, more than 65 kilograms of active ingredient for the manufacture of 38,000,000 doses of different products, test tubes, laboratory material , a kilo of ecstasy and a weapon.