Spain, USA, Colombia and Northern Macedonia join forces in anti-cocaine smuggling operation

Photo of Teresa Ribera at the Cepsa plant in Tenerife. Credit: [email protected]

SPAIN’s National Police have intercepted a 700 kilo of cocaine that was destined for European countries. 

The Spanish force joined up with the Delegate against Organised Crime of Colombia, the USA’s Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) and the Organised Crime Unit of the Police of Northern Macedonia to track and halt the shipment. 

During the operation three people were arrested who had come to collect the drugs from a shopping centre in Madrid, including the representative of the Macedonian organisation that had received the drugs. Two other people have been arrested in Macedonia. 

Agents from Colombia’s Delegate against Organised Crime, in collaboration with the DEA, detected a series of contacts between a criminal group in Northern Macedonia and Colombian cocaine-producing criminal organisations last summer. 

Those investigated had agreed to ship 700 kilos of cocaine by sea through Spain for subsequent distribution to different European countries. 

Thanks to the exchange of information between Spain, Colombia, the United States and the authorities of Northern Macedonia, an investigation was initiated to determine and identify the people involved in the purchase and sale of the narcotics prior to its distribution on the market. 

As a result of that investigation, it became known that the main perpetrator had travelled to Spain and held a series of meetings with the people responsible for the logistics of cocaine collection. 

The investigations carried out revealed that those investigated were preparing to collect the consignment of drugs after purchasing various effects in a sports equipment shop. 

For this purpose, they went to the car park of a shopping centre in Alcalá de Henares (Madrid) where a van loaded with cocaine was parked. The extensive surveillance system deployed by investigators in the area made it possible to intercept them as they prepared to pick up the drugs. 

In a coordinated effort, the authorities in Northern Macedonia arrested two people in their country, one of them being the brother of one of the detainees in Spain. 

The operation, which is still open, was coordinated by the Anti-Drug Prosecutor’s Office of the National Court and the Court of Instruction No. 5 of Alcalá de Henares. 

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Written by

Dilip Kuner

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