By John Smith • 01 March 2021 • 11:37
The huge cache of illegal weapons seized
Credit: Guardia Civil
AFTER a year of research, officers from the Guardia Civil have arrested seven people in the provinces of Bizkaia and Valencia who were involved in the repurposing and sale of firearms.
The investigation was launched after officers received information from other police forces around Europe that an individual in Bizkaia was suspected of being involved in selling firearms which were supposed to be disabled.
Once identified, the Guardia Civil operation established that he had been connected in some way or other with a number of people arrested for arms trafficking since 2012 and was allegedly involved in rehabilitating supposedly disabled weapons by fixing new barrels or other parts to them.
When officers raided the various properties of suspects, they discovered an incredible number of working firearms including 18 assault rifles and machine guns, 44 handguns, hand grenades, silencers, 27,000 cartridges, blank certificates attesting to the fact that weapons had been disabled and new barrels as well as gunpowder and bullets.
Those arrested will be charged with a number of offences including possession of ‘weapons of war’ as the assault rifles and machine guns are classed, as only armed forces and military units are allowed to have access to them legally.
This operation is part of the Comprehensive Plan for the Control of Firearms (PICAF) of the Civil Guard, which is the body that at the national level is exclusively entrusted with competence over the control of weapons and explosives.
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Married to Ophelia in Gibraltar in 1978, John has spent much of his life travelling on security print and minting business and visited every continent except Antarctica.
Having retired several years ago, the couple moved to their house in Estepona and John became a regular news writer for the EWN Media Group taking particular interest in Finance, Gibraltar and Costa del Sol Social Scene.
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