The Cocaine In Spain Comes Mainly With Plantains, Say Cops Who Intercepted Shipment From Ecuador.

Many of the packages were branded with swastikas and the word "Hitler", similar to a consignment of cocaine that was intercepted in Peru en route to Belgium in May this year. Labels also include Tag Heuer, the name of an expensive brand of Swiss wrist watch, and Victorinox, another Swiss manufacturer of knives. Photo credit: JORGE GUERRERO / AFP
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The Spanish National Police said on Friday they had confiscated 9.5 tonnes of cocaine blocks hidden in a refrigerated container full of bananas coming from Ecuador, in what became the largest  illicit drug shipment interception in Spain’s history.”

In the course of a joint operation with the Customs Surveillance Service, agents of the National Police have seized the largest amount of cocaine in Spanish history in the port of Algeciras.

The cocaine was hidden inside banana crates stored in a refrigerated maritime container originating from Ecuador,” the law enforcement said in a statement.

The operation was called Nano and was carried out by the Customs Surveillance Service of the Tax Agency and agents of the National Police.

According to Spanish Customs, the drug was hidden inside banana boxes and had more than 30 different logos, which would correspond to the different European criminal organizations that received said cache. The cargo had Portugal as its final destination.

Photo credit: AFP. The blocks of cocaine are professionally wrapped and labeled with a variety of brand names.

The group responsible for the shipment is believed to have an extensive business network for shipping sea containers from Ecuador to Spain and may own a banana company in Machala, claimed sources.

The company has been sending about 40 containers per month addressed to various European companies.”The operation has dealt an unprecedented blow to one of the most important global criminal organizations, which has been trafficking cocaine to major criminal networks across Europe,” the statement read.

According the the El Universo newspaper of Guayaquil, Ecuador, the Balkans cartel is supected to be responsible for the shipment.The Balkans cartel is not new in Ecuador.The Ecuadorian police have already identified it as one of the cartels with ties in Ecuador to more than the Mexicans of Sinaloa and Jalisco Nueva Generación.

The Balkans cartel is not new in Ecuador. The Ecuadorian police have already identified it as one of the cartels with ties in Ecuador to more than the Mexicans of Sinaloa and Jalisco Nueva Generación.According to the Police, the Balkan mafia operates in eastern Europe, in the peninsular countries adjacent to the Balkan Mountains (this would include Albania).

Currently, this transnational group handles most of the illicit drug trafficking on the planet with 40%, divided between heroin trafficking from Central Asia and cocaine trafficking from South America.

Alerts about this mafia have been raised since the first arrest of a Montenegrin citizen in 2009, which showed that this type of family-based organization has expanded its influence by including Ecuadorian, Albanian and Kosovar citizens within their drug trafficking networks.

Balkan organizations specialize in the contamination of containers for shipment through the seaports located in Guayaquil and the Guayas and El Oro sub-zones.There are no detainees for the seizure of the 9.5 tons of drugs detected in Spain, but the Police of that country have indicated that the investigation is still ongoing.

This may represent a change from shipping  via the port of Guayaquil, which is usually implicated in cocaine smuggling. The sourthern port of Machala is close to the border with Peru, itself a major producer of cocaine.

Sources: Sputnik, El Universo.
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