‘Cap­tagon’ lab raided near Elef­sina

Po­lice un­cover ring pro­duc­ing syn­thetic drug used by com­bat­ants in Syria

Kathimerini English - - Front Page -

The fi­nan­cial crimes unit (SDOE) an­nounced yes­ter­day it had dis­cov­ered a lab pro­duc­ing large quan­ti­ties of fenethylline, a syn­thetic drug re­ported to be widely used for recre­ational pur­poses in the Mid­dle East as well as by fight­ers in Syria to boost their courage on the bat­tle­field, where it is known by the brand name Cap­tagon.

Four peo­ple were ar­rested – two Greeks, an Al­ba­nian and a Turk­ish na­tional – and po­lice say they are also look­ing for three more sus­pects, in­clud­ing a re­tired po­lice of­fi­cer.

The lab, the first of its kind to be dis­cov­ered in Greece, was lo­cated near Elef­sina, west of Athens, in a joint op­er­a­tion con­ducted by SDOE, the Greek coast guard and po­lice.

Author­i­ties said that 635,000 pills were con­fis­cated, as well as a truck equipped with spe­cial com­part­ments to con­ceal the drugs. The pills were pro­duced to be ex­ported, but the des­ti­na­tion was not clear.

The in­ves­ti­ga­tion trail fur­ther led to a cus­tom-tai­lored speed­boat, in the Me­so­geia area of eastern At­tica, which also had hid­den com­part­ments, and was used to smug­gle the drugs out of Greece.

The value of the con­fis­cated pills is es­ti­mated at ap­prox­i­mately 10 mil­lion eu­ros.

Fenethylline is an am­phet­a­mine-type stim­u­lant that was first used be­tween the 1960s and 1980s in the treat­ment of At­ten­tion Deficit Hy­per­ac­tiv­ity Dis­or­der (ADHD), nar­colepsy and de­pres­sion. It was even­tu­ally taken off the mar­ket due to its side ef­fects and be­cause it is highly ad­dic­tive.

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