National Police agents, in a joint operation with the French National Police, have dismantled a criminal organization dedicated to sending cannabis hidden in legal merchandise through Moroccan trucks bound for France. The narcotic was collected in two “nurseries” -as the place where the drug is hidden until it is put into circulation is known in police slang-, located in Seville and Malaga. A total of 247 kilos of marijuana buds, small amounts of hashish, almost 40,000 euros and a firearm have been seized.
The operation began last November when investigators collected information on subjects based in Benalmádena and Fuengirola allegedly engaged in drug trafficking, mainly hashish and marijuana, bound for France. The investigations made it possible to locate a house used as a “nursery”, where those investigated hid a van and a car that they used to collect the narcotic substance. They also observed how those investigated changed the license plates of the vehicles before each of their trips to the “daycare centers”, which had strong security measures.
On these trips they transported packages from inside the vehicles to the houses where they prepared the drugs for shipment. In mid-November, the criminal group traveled to a polygon in Malaga where they made contact with a Moroccan truck that would later head to France.
A truck collided with a guardrail while trying to escape
Once the investigators detected the procedure used by the organization, in mid-December new movements were observed that coincided with the collection of narcotic substances, for which reason the agents carried out an operation to arrest those involved. When those investigated left the house in three vehicles -two cars and a van- to meet with a truck, when it detected the police presence, it began to zigzag along the highway until it collided with one of the exterior guardrails.
Upon inspecting the vehicle, the investigators found three bags inside the cabin and another four in a hole on the underside of the trailer bed, containing vacuum-packed marijuana buds weighing approximately 165 kg.
Subsequently, a search was carried out in the homes where close to 37,000 euros in cash were located, two devices intended to locate geolocation devices, several hashish pills, German and French license plates, and various documentation that pointed to regular shipments of several hundred of kilos of hashish and cannabis.
Farms were used for the indoor cultivation of marijuana
Thanks to the police operation, it was detected that both farms were involved in criminal activity, having electrical installations associated with the indoor cultivation of marijuana, the use of surveillance dogs and the presence of people who monitored narcotic substances.
After the entry and search of the farms, located in Seville and Malaga, a short firearm, a small indoor marijuana plantation and various documentation referring to previous drug transactions were seized. A total of seven people have been arrested as allegedly responsible for the crimes of belonging to a criminal organization, drug and arms trafficking, and electricity fraud.
Research co-financed by the European Union in the EMPACT framework
The investigation was carried out by agents of the Spanish National Police and the French National Police within the framework of EMPACT (European Multidisciplinary Platform against Criminal Threats). Through this framework, European Union Member States, agencies and other EU partners work closely together to tackle major criminal threats through joint operational actions designed to disrupt criminal networks, their structures and business models. . The research carried out in this framework has been co-financed by the European Union within the support given to Member States to combat crime in fields such as cannabis, heroin and cocaine trafficking, among other matters.