FOUR people have been arrested in Almeria as part of an operation that has seen more than 120 people arrested across the country on suspicion of tobacco smuggling.
In the second phase of the operation known as ‘Pacote’, which has lasted over a year, Guardia Civil officers have reportedly analysed more than 172,000 computer files and 3,000 different shipments in order to extract enough evidence to enable these arrests.
Those arrested are believed to form part of a criminal organisation that would allegedly use courier companies and rental vans to smuggle tobacco thought Europe in order to bypass police.
The organisation is alleged to have introduced at least 87,000 kilos of tobacco to the black market in 2016 alone.
The investigation first began in November last year, which reportedly saw six members of the same family arrested in Caceres and 250,000 kilos of tobacco were seized, leading to the second phase of the operation which has now seen the countrywide arrests.
A total of 124 people have been arrested in provinces across Spain which include: Albacete, Alicante, Almeria, Badajoz, Barcelona, Cádiz, Castellón, Ciudad Real, Córdoba, Huelva, Jaén, La Coruña, León, Madrid, Málaga, Murcia, Navarra, Pontevedra, Seville, Tarragona, Toledo and Valencia.