PROSECUTORS want the former head of the Policia Nacional’s anti-drug unit in Alicante jailed for 15 years for his role in the biggest-ever cocaine distribution gang in the Valencian Community.
The El Pais newspaper reports that Inspector Javier Mendez was part of a 69-strong crew that distributed 4,000 kilos of cocaine.
Mendez has been charged with drug trafficking, bribery and illegally disclosing information, according to documents seen by El Pais.
His associates were well-known Galician and Valencian drug traffickers who set up an extensive operation to launder their proceeds with front men and shell companies in Romania, Sweden, Portugal and Colombia.
The cocaine gang was brought down in 2019 with one of the leaders found to have €1.5 million in cash stuffed in three suitcases at his house.
The Prosecutor’s Office has requested a total of 749 years in prison for the gang members and fines amounting to €435 million.
Javier Mendez attended 24 meetings in 2018 and 2019 in Denia, Javea and Alicante with leaders of the criminal group.
He’s accused of tipping-off two of the ring-leaders about police investigations and taking part in a money laundering plot to recycle profits made from the enterprise.
Cash was laundered through a Denia luxury car dealership Designcars, according to prosecutors..
The dealer had 70 cars including brands like Porsche, Ferrari and Jaguar with Mendez ‘buying and selling cars’ for it.
He purchased the vehicles which were then refurbished in a clandestine workshop run by two police officers who were paid in cash.
The fleet was then sold on through a business linked to another drugs boss who had 19 arrests to his name for drug trafficking, fraud and illicit association.
Other people facing trial include the four gang leaders; an Alicante lawyer who was involved in distributing cocaine; a body builder called El Tigre who acted as a debt collector; and a martial arts fighter for trafficking drugs in the Alicante area.
Among the gang’s major moves was a failed attempt to bring in 2,020 kilos of cocaine by boat to Galicia, with a retail value of around €104 million.
Investigators seized 1,300 kilos of cocaine on a beach in Tulcea, Romania, and dismantled a processing laboratory with 14 kilos of cocaine in Oliva, Valencia province in 2019.