THE LEADER of Russia’s largest drug trafficking gang has been arrested in Mijas following a joint operation between Spanish and Estonian police.
Three members of the criminal network, named Kemerovo, which operated out of Estonia, have also been arrested in Tallinn, under operation Fulcrum-Carinatus.
The Estonian authorities began investigating the gang more than two years ago but stepped up their work after the leader of the Russian criminal world in Estonia was assassinated by an accountant in September 2016, sparking a violent turf war.
Police believe the man arrested in Mijas moved to Spain to avoid falling victim to assassination in the wake of increasing gang violence in Estonia, as well as to establish a power base there for drug trafficking, among other crimes, as well as to launder money.
The Spanish and Estonian authorities soon started working together, investigating Kemerovo’s activities in Spain, ascertaining its leader was issuing orders to gang members in Estonia. Officers searched the man’s house and found accounting documents, hidden cash, computers, an axe and a large knife hidden under his pillow.
The organisation’s other leaders, which include the group’s chief lieutenant, a martial arts expert who recruited “soldiers” to the gang, were arrested in Tallinn. Ten of the “soldiers” have been arrested over the last year and various computers have been seized from their homes.