International drug smugglers using Quarteira foiled by Spanish and Portuguese police

In a complex investigation involving 2.4 tons of hashish brought into Europe from Morocco, Spanish and Portuguese police have rounded up a smuggling gang that used Quarteira as one of its many drop-off points.

Making a statement on Saturday, Spain’s Guardia Civil said it had managed to arrest 15 people – including the leader of the operation, a businessman from Algeciras – in searches that had gone ahead at various points in Spain as well as in Vilamoura, Algarve.

The network was considered “international”, but with many roots on national soil, reports Jornal de Notícias.

Indeed, the gang was the one behind the 855 kilos of hashish recovered from a boat in Quarteira earlier this year, explains Correio da Manhã.

The police investigation has seen 23 high-speed motorboats, two yachts “valued at €1.8 million”, four jetskis, 12 vehicles and 4750 litres of fuel confiscated, while the searches that involved an address in Vilamoura as well as 14 other locations have resulted in the apprehension of €463,465.

The alleged gang members are all due in court today, writes CM – but it is not certain where they will be appearing. It could be that the case is heard in Spain.

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