VIDEO: Police raid Spain's first South American style cocaine lab
Twelve people have been arrested as part of a National Police operation which has uncovered the first cocaine-producing laboratory in Spain, similar to those in South America, with the capacity to produce 120 kilos of the drug a week with a street value of more than 7 million euros a week.
‘Operation Silicon’, which began in May, included searches of properties in Malaga, Cordoba and Madrid, as the leader of the group, who is Spanish and has been living a luxury lifestyle in Malaga, is said to have used third parties to import the drug in sacks of cement, before it was then used at a clandestine laboratory in the countryside in the outskirts of Madrid.
The police ascertained that the organisation was storing a large quantity of chemical products in Cordoba, which they then transferred as needed to a shipping container situated in a Costa del Sol car park ready for transporting.
The officers also identified a man from the Dominican Republic who worked closely with the leader of the gang, who supervised the production of the drug in the lab and arranged how it was distributed. He had personally recruited three Colombians who came to Spain specifically to extract the cocaine. These people are known as ‘cooks’ and are contracted for a specific operation.
Investigators learned that the gang had originally rented a house in Coín, which is a town 20km inland from Fuengirola, and intended to turn that into the laboratory, but then decided on an alternative location in Madrid instead.
When officers from the Special Operations Group entered the laboratory, they found five ‘cooks’ at work. Apart from the 12 arrests, they seized a supply of products needed to ‘cut’ the cocaine, six vehicles, and 36,000 euros in cash.