An international drug gang has been busted by the Guardia Civil with the support of Europol in Almoradí, San Miguel de Salinas and Elche. They played classical tunes to encourage marijuana plants to grow, according to the Guardia Civil.
AN INTERNATIONAL drug gang has been busted by the Guardia Civil with the support of Europol in Almoradí, San Miguel de Salinas and Elche.
The suspects arrested are two Swedish nationals aged 40 and 55, two Spaniards aged 36 and 46 and a German aged 35.
The gang specialised in growing marijuana via an innovative system.
A Guardia Civil spokesman said the gang rented isolated houses and industrial premises in Almoradí, Elche and San Miguel de Salinas and turned the properties into fully autonomous plantations where classical music was played 24 hours a day. According to the spokesman, the music was supposed to improve the quality of the plants and help them grow faster.
The gang was allegedly led by one of the Swedish members, who lived in a luxury villa in Elche valued at €1 million. According to the spokesman, he had been member of a violent drug gang based in Madrid several years ago and was being investigated by the Swedish police for money laundering and drug dealing.
He used several front companies in Spain and Sweden to rent the premises for around €3,000 a month to grow the marihuana and launder money at the same time.
However, the front companies were the main evidence the officers used to track and monitor him.
The Guardia Civil revealed that the gang grew up to four crops a year and their annual profits amounted to around €320,000.
Five raids were carried out in Elche, Crevillente, Aspe, Almoradí and San Miguel de Salinas by the Guardia Civil, who seized 2,000 marijuana plants in three different premises, 33 kilos of packed marijuana, 10 grams of cocaine, €11,000 in cash, four luxury cars, two motorbikes and a shotgun with a silencer.
They have all been charged with offences including crimes against public health and drug dealing, money laundering, document forgery and asset stripping and were remanded in custody without bail.
One of the villas which was raided