OVIEDO (AA) – Spanish police announced today that they arrested 197 members of organized crime networks in 29 separate investigations supported by Europol and European Union (EU) funds, reports Anadolu.
Large amounts of drugs and 4.2 million euros in cash were also seized during the investigation.
The investigations were mainly focused on breaking up criminal drug trafficking networks.
The groups have been labeled by Europol as highly influential and prepared to use violence and firearms to bring huge quantities of drugs into the continent.
Of those detained, 33 were fugitives from justice, some of whom are marked as extremely dangerous, the police said. Six of those detained have been identified as prime targets by EU authorities.
Those detained were from 34 different countries, mainly European, but also from Canada, Colombia, Lebanon, Morocco, Nigeria, Russia, Somalia, Ukraine, Uruguay and Venezuela.
The charges include drug trafficking, fraud, money laundering, sex crimes and weapons possession, police said.
During the investigation, the police seized almost 5 tons of cocaine, 1.8 tons of hashish, 1.3 tons of marijuana, 3,300 ecstasy tablets, 28 weapons and 4.2 million euros in cash.
Spain is known as one of the main European entry points for drugs, primarily for cocaine coming from South America.
Meanwhile, police seized assets worth around €12 million and froze bank accounts worth €10 million belonging to members of the criminal gang.
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