The National Police, in a joint operation with Customs officials from the Tax Agency, has seized 561 kilos of cocaine from Panama that were introduced into Spain through the port of Valencia in Almassora (Castellón), and has arrested four alleged drug traffickers. The drugs were hidden inside six large metal cylinders, among thousands of kilos of scrap metal, the National Police has reported.
In the same operation, 23,315 euros in cash, a large displacement vehicle and tools used in the extraction of drugs - such as radials and 75 cutting discs - were seized, among other items.
The investigation began last October, when the agents learned of the arrival of four suspicious containers at the Port of Valencia, aboard a ship from Panama. The containers arrived in Spain as scrap at the beginning of November, with delivery address at a scrapyard company located in the Almassora Industrial Estate (Castellón).
In a first inspection of the containers in the Port of Valencia, investigators detected that among the trash of metal scrap there were six large, apparently solid metal cylinders. Weighing hundreds of kilos, they were anomalous in relation to the rest of the merchandise transported (thousands of kilos of scrap metal).
Given the difficulty of carrying out a more exhaustive inspection of the merchandise - due to the large dimensions and weighing of the suspicious cylinders - the agents monitored them with the aim of identifying their recipients and confirming whether they were carrying a narcotic substance. .
Once the containers left the Port of Valencia, they were transferred to a warehouse, belonging to a scrapyard company, located in the Almassora Industrial Estate (Castellón). There, the agents observed how the person in charge - accompanied by two other people - inspected and controlled the unloading operations, while examining the merchandise, paying special attention to the six metal cylinders.
On the other hand, the agents confirmed the presence of a fourth person in the ship whose mission would be to carry out the operations to extract cocaine from inside the cylinders. Finally, the investigators broke into the company and made an incision with a radial in one of the cylinders, confirming that cocaine was indeed hidden inside.
The operation has allowed the seizure of 561 packages of cocaine, each weighing one kilo, with different logos. In the searches carried out at the homes of two of those arrested – located in Madrid and Valencia – the agents have located more cash and documentation related to the events investigated.