Newsbriefing – Week of 3 February



The Ivory Coast navy seized 411 kg of cocaine and made 5 arrests following the discovery of a ship idling at high sea. The ship was seen to offload the drugs to a smaller vessel that came alongside. The West African coast is vulnerable to illicit drug trafficking, as previous seizures in Cape Verde and Guinea Bissau demonstrate, however, this type of seizure in the Ivory Coast is quite rare.

The Spanish police arrested 26 suspected members of an organised crime gang that used speedboats to traffic migrants from Algeria and Morocco to the coastal cities of Almería and Cadiz.

A South African court issued an arrest warrant against the former South African president Jacob Zuma after he claimed being too ill to appear in court. Jacob Zuma is accused of corruption, money laundering and racketeering in relation to deal signed in 1999 with a French company.

25 suspects linked to an Albanian speaking Organised Crime Network were arrested during a simultaneous operation carried out in Belgium, Spain, the Netherlands, Germany and France which saw the involvement of over 600 police officers on the ground. The investigation, led by the Antwerp Local Police, established that the drugs, hidden in containers,  were being smuggled into Belgium before being distributed throughout Europe in  vehicles equipped with sophisticated hidden compartments.

The Spanish police dismantled an organised crime organisation involved since 2015 in the trafficking of stolen waste cardboard from Spain to Asian countries. More than 40 suspects were arrested.

Bulgarian authorities seized around 500 kg of cocaine emanating from Colombia hidden in two trucks transporting citrus fruits. Two suspects were arrested.