I.According to Europol, international investigators arrested more than 800 suspects in over 100 countries during an operation against organized crime. It was one of the largest police operations to date, Europol announced on Tuesday in The Hague. More than 700 homes have been searched, tons of drugs have been seized and large amounts of cash, jewels and weapons have been seized.
Investigators had wiretapped phone calls and other communications from the gangs for over 18 months. More than 27 million messages have been filtered. The blow was successful because undercover officers smuggled prepared phones into more than 300 gangs, including Mafia gangs in Italy, motorcycle gangs and international drug syndicates. The phones, which were supposed to be encrypted, were, according to Europol, connected to a telecom network that had been set up by the FBI.
“This was one of the largest and most sophisticated missions ever,” said Deputy Europol Director Jean-Philippe Lecouffe in The Hague. Operation Trojan Shield was under the direction of the American FBI, the US FDA, the police of Sweden and the Netherlands and was coordinated by Europol. Investigators in 16 countries were involved, including Germany.
With a raid on nationwide over a hundred apartments, warehouses and business premises, the police took action against drug crime nationwide on Monday. In Germany alone, with a focus on Hesse, the police forces searched over 100 apartments, warehouses and business premises on Monday.