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DRUGS

Spanish narco arrested after cameo in reggaeton music video

One of Spain's most-wanted drug traffickers was arrested on Wednesday after seeming to taunt police by appearing in a music video, a police spokesman told AFP.

Spanish narco arrested after cameo in reggaeton music video
A clip from the music video showing El Castaño on the right.

Francisco Tejon, leader of the “Los Castanas” clan, was “arrested today at La Linea de la Concepcion,” a southern city near the border with Gibraltar, the spokesman said. 

According to police, Tejon runs a major hashish trafficking network in the southern region of Andalusia with his brother Antonio, who was arrested in June.

The two brothers had previously escaped a police operation in late 2016 that resulted in the arrest of 30 suspected members of their gang.   

Francisco Tejon recently came back to the police's attention by making a smiling cameo in a music video of reggaeton singer Clase-A.   

In the video, Tejon gets out of a Bentley, enters a house filled with bikini-clad women around a swimming pool and ends up in a room where more scantily clad women are waiting for him.

The video sparked controversy when it was posted on social media and the singer has since taken it down from YouTube.   

It “shows the lack of respect (drug traffickers) have for the security forces,” Jose Encinas of the AUGC Guardia Civil association told AFP.   

Police said Tejon was arrested at a place communicated to them by his lawyers, suggesting the drug lord had turned himself in.   

“With his arrest, the police have dismantled the leadership of the largest clan dedicated to hashish trafficking” in the region, police added.   

Drug traffickers are operating increasingly in the open in this part of Andalusia, which has high unemployment. They land shipments of drugs on beaches in broad daylight and physically attack police officers.   

La Linea de la Concepcion is in Cadiz province, the entry point for 40 percent of the drugs smuggled into Spain, according to the interior ministry.   

Police unions have said that 30 drug trafficking groups with more than 3,000 members operate in the province — just 15 kilometres (nine miles) from Morocco's northern coast.

DRUGS

Spanish police make ‘biggest ever haul of synthetic drugs’

Spanish police said Friday they had seized a record 827,000 ecstasy tablets as well as other narcotics in what they called "the biggest ever seizure of synthetic drugs" in Spain.

Spanish police make 'biggest ever haul of synthetic drugs'
Police claim the seizure is the biggest in Spanish history. Photo: Guardia Civil and the National Police
In a joint operation, the Guardia Civil and the National Police smashed “the main international criminal organisation behind the production and supply of most of the synthetic drugs in Spain”, they said in a joint statement.
   
Synthetic drugs are manufactured using man-made chemicals rather than natural ingredients.
   
Eleven people were arrested on charges of drug trafficking and belonging to a criminal organisation, including the organisation's Dutch boss.
 
   
As well as the ecstasy tabs, police also seized 76 kilos (167 pounds) of speed, 39.5 kilos of crystal meth and 217 litres of liquid amphetamine with which they could have produced 738.5 kilos of speed.
   
They also impounded almost 400 kilos of hashish and marijuana which they were to have exported to The Netherlands to pay for the purchase of the necessary substances to manufacture the drugs at two labs in Barcelona.
   
The organisation included traffickers from Spain, The Netherlands, Romania, Colombia and Italy and had bases in Barcelona, the southern city of Malaga and the island of Ibiza, all of which are known for having a vibrant nightlife and many dance clubs.
   
Although Spain is considered one of the main drug gateways to Europe, seizures of synthetic narcotics are uncommon as most traffickers usually deal in cannabis and cocaine.
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