High seas arrest of gang with EUR 22m cannabis

7th June 2005, Comments 0 comments

7 June 2005, MADRID — Spanish and British police have stopped a fishing boat which was carrying eight tonnes of cannabis worth EUR 22 million bound for the UK.

7 June 2005

MADRID — Spanish and British police have stopped a fishing boat which was carrying eight tonnes of cannabis worth EUR 22 million bound for the UK.

In the latest in a series of major drugs busts, the British fishing vessel was stopped in international waters between Cape St Vincent and Lisbon.

Four crewmen, including two Britons, an Estonian and a Spaniard, were arrested on the boat.

Three Scotsmen, who were said to be involved in making sure the drugs reached the UK, were arrested in Glasgow.

Spanish police, working with British counterparts, carried out a number of raids, seizing a large quantity of drugs and paperwork.

A Spanish police source said the operation was still ongoing and they did not discount the possibility of more arrests in Scotland and Spain.

The ship, which was named as Squilla, was due to dock at the port of Cadiz in the south of Spain early on Tuesday morning.

The operation, codenamed 'Bouzas', has been underway for three months after Spanish police agreed to work with British counterparts through Europol to stop the smuggling of large quantities of cannabis from Morocco to the UK.

The operation culminated with the boarding of the ship, 'Squilla' on Monday.

Police discovered eight tonnes of cannabis resin.

Even though police could not be sure the drugs were destined for Scotland and may have been bound for other European countries, they decided to board the ship so they would not miss the chance to break up this gang.

The bust follows an international operation by Spanish, British and German police to crack a drugs trafficking network partly based in southern Spain.

Eleven arrests were made in Spain, Germany, Britain and at sea and 113 kg of the drug were seized.

On 31 May, Spain announced that a similar anti-drugs operation mounted in cooperation with Portuguese and British police netted five tonnes of Colombian cocaine worth EUR 332 million.

[Copyright EFE with Expatica]

Subject: Spanish news

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