The Spanish Civil Guard in collaboration with OFAST and Europol dismantles an organization that smuggled drugs into Spain with helicopters

 The Civil Guard, with the collaboration of the OFAST (Office anti-stupéfiants) of the French police and the coordination of Europol, has dismantled a criminal organization that trafficked in hashish and marijuana and laundered all the illicitly obtained capital. 

The organization made up of French citizens acquired the drug in Morocco and Andalusia and later transported it to France by hiding it among the legal load of heavy trucks or through the GO FAST method, using vehicles with false registration plates.  Operation COPA-SUCRE began in 2020, when the Civil Guard and OFAST detected the activity of the French organization in southern Spain. 

As a result of the investigation, the presence of several members of the organization using numerous vehicles was discovered and the illegal entry without a flight plan of a helicopter off the Andalusian coast from Morocco was discovered, and a member of the organization was later identified who he was carrying wrappers of hashish bales. 

Through the monitoring of the detected vehicles and the members of the organization based in the province of Malaga, the Civil Guard located one of those investigated who used false identity documents, going so far as to detect said individual up to five different identities and all of them false. The agents verified that several people were carrying out suspicious activities and taking numerous security measures while traveling by vehicle. 

After several days of surveillance, it was detected how they interacted with a truck with French registration, for which it was intercepted in Narbonne and when inspecting the cargo they found 419 kilograms of hashish inside, among the legal cargo it carries, detaining the driver from the truck. Continuing with the investigation of the members of the criminal organization, the Civil Guard obtained the apprehension of another 327 kilograms of hashish in Baza (Granada) inside a vehicle with bent plates that had been being pursued. 

Subsequently, the agents detected another drug trafficking operation and managed to seize 860 kilograms of hashish in Chauchina (Granada), which they hid among the legal cargo of a truck that had left another industrial warehouse controlled by the investigated organization. 112 kilograms of marijuana were also seized in Port Bou (Gerona) in another vehicle used by members of this organization. On the other hand, a few days later the Civil Guard detected a cache of drugs carried out with a helicopter in Torremolinos (Malaga), where 211 kilograms of hashish and the aircraft that transported them were seized and that had traveled without an established flight plan to the neighbor country of Morocco.  

In Marbella, the investigators also detected a drug transport aboard a passenger car with false registration plates, which after visiting a home in Marbella, set off in the direction of Malaga. A police device was then organized with uniformed agents to stop the suspicious vehicle and to stop it, at which point the vehicle evaded the police control, trying to run over one of the agents who had to avoid it to avoid being run over, but managed to do use of the locking means by puncturing a vehicle wheel. 

Despite this, and the fact that he was driving only with the rim on one of the wheels, he reached a speed of over 180 kilometers per hour, even going as far as ramming one of the police vehicles. Finally, after a side collision with the police vehicle, the driver was arrested, being inside the vehicle 329 kilograms of hashish, in six bales and numerous packages. In the house from which this vehicle left, after conducting a search with judicial authorization, another 8 bales of hashish were seized, weighing 266 kilograms, and 3 people were arrested. 

Another of the crimes clarified is money laundering, since the investigated organization used money from drug trafficking to finance the necessary logistics, including seized means of transport, and concealed its true origin through the use of fictitious companies.  Once the rest of the members of the organization have been identified, 7 entries and records are requested from the Court in the provinces of Cádiz, Málaga, Almería and Castellón. 

In the records, 3 helicopters, 4 firearms, abundant ammunition, bulletproof vests, and numerous electronic devices that were used to avoid police action are intervened.  Finally, in the operation 11 people have been arrested, one of them by the French police. There are 9 people pending arrest in France with European arrest warrants and more than 2.4 tons of hashish and 112 kilograms of marijuana have been seized.