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In the early hours of the morning, over a thousand police officers with the support of Europol carried out coordinated raids against the members of this highly professional criminal syndicate. Some 180 house searches were executed, resulting in the arrest of 45 suspects.
The investigation uncovered that this drug trafficking network was responsible for the annual importation of at least 45 tonnes of cocaine into the main European seaports, with profits exceeding €100 million over the course of 6 months.
This international sting, led by the Portuguese, Belgian and Brazilian authorities, was carried out simultaneously by agencies from three different continents, with coordination efforts facilitated by Europol:
Fifteen people have been arrested in Malta as part of operation Proteus, a highly sophisticated money laundering case, following months of intensive investigations by the Maltese Anti-Money Laundering Section within the Financial Crime Investigations Department.
Carding Action 2020, an operation led by law enforcement agencies from Italy and Hungary and supported by the UK and Europol, targeted fraudsters selling and purchasing compromised card details on websites selling stolen credit card data, known as card shops, and dark web marketplaces.
More than 60 minors were identified as potential victims of human trafficking during joint action days
Europol, Portugal, Spain and the United Kingdom coordinated a Europe-wide joint action day targeting child trafficking. The operation, also supported by Frontex, took place between 5 and 11 October 2020 and involved 12* countries.
A wide range of law enforcement authorities including police, immigration and border control agencies, transport police, social assistance and child protection services and labour inspectorates participated in the joint action.
The alleged leaders of this cell feature among those arrested
On 28 October, Europol supported the CGI of the Spanish National Police (Comisaría General de Información de la Policía Nacional) in arresting three suspects linked to a terrorist cell actively recruiting and indoctrinating young people. The individuals, among which feature the alleged leaders of the cell, were arrested as a result of house searches carried out in San Sebastian and Pasaia in northern Spain. They are believed to have created the terrorist structure to carry out jihadist terrorism in support of the so-called Islamic State.
He was seeking to recruit new members for the so-called Islamic State terrorist organisation
The Spanish Civil Guard (Guardia Civil) arrested a supporter of the so-called Islamic State terrorist organisation in an operation developed together with Europol. The suspect was searching, editing and further disseminating terrorist propaganda material to young people online.
24 arrested for producing and trafficking doping substances.
The French Gendarmerie (Gendarmerie nationale/OCLAESP) and the French Customs (Direction générale des douanes et droits indirects), supported by the Financial Division of the Hellenic Police (Διεύθυνση Οικονομικής Αστυνομίας) and Europol, took down a criminal network involved in the production and trafficking of doping substances and counterfeit medicines.
The network was abusing women from Latin America in a rental apartment prostitution scheme
The French Judicial Police within the National Police (Police judiciaire / Police nationale) and the Colombian Police (Policía Nacional), supported by Europol, dismantled an organised criminal group involved in human trafficking for sexual exploitation and money laundering.
On 16 October the General Commissariat of Information of the Spanish National Police (Policía Nacional – CGI) arrested two individuals for their alleged link to a terrorist organisation and on suspicion of recruiting and indoctrinating for the purpose of jihadist terrorism. During an action day supported by Europol, Spanish police raided the homes of the suspects in the cities of Melilla and Mogán in Las Palmas de Gran Canaria. Law enforcement seized multiple mobile and electronic devices.
An unprecedented international law enforcement operation involving 16 countries has resulted in the arrest of 20 individuals suspected of belonging to the QQAAZZ criminal network which attempted to launder tens of millions of euros on behalf of the world’s foremost cybercriminals.
Some 40 house searches were carried out in Latvia, Bulgaria, the United Kingdom, Spain and Italy, with criminal proceedings initiated against those arrested by the United States, Portugal, the United Kingdom and Spain. The largest number of searches in the case were carried out in Latvia in operations led by the Latvian State Police (Latvijas Valsts Policija). Bitcoin mining equipment was also seized in Bulgaria.