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A plague without borders: how the Sinaloa Cartel and CJNG filled the Netherlands with drug labs from

(Photo: REUTERS / Athit Perawongmetha)
(Photo: REUTERS / Athit Perawongmetha)

Mexican cartels are increasingly moved by the Netherlands to produce methamphetamine, taking advantage of the ease of introducing raw materials through the Dutch ports, which has increased the number of clandestine laboratories for the concern of the Police.

The current war against and between the Dutch, Moroccan and West Indies drug traffickers that exploded in 2012, after the disappearance of a shipment of 200 kilos of cocaine from the port of Antwerp, in Belgium, took a dream off the authorities, a bloody conflict that it has claimed dozens of lives in Amsterdam over the past decade.

But dismantling each time more meth production labs in the Netherlands, managed by Mexican cartels that take advantage of the raw materials that enter through the ports, supposes the opening of a new front, which they fear will be as violent as the war against the cocaine and marijuana mafias in the Netherlands already is.

The Dutch newspaper De Telegraaf has rated this country as the "Valhalla" -the paradise in Nordic mythology- of the drug cartels, after Andy Kraag, head of the National Division of Criminal Investigation, assured him that "Dutch drug traffickers work with Mexicans to gain experience and replace ecstasy with methamphetamine in the laboratories ”.

The arrests have been going on for several months, although initially the Police believed that it was a specific threat; But the discovery of more and more clandestine laboratories takes that situation to another level and indicates that the cartels have discovered in the Netherlands a convenient transit port to install the production of all kinds of drugs.

Three citizens of Mexico, Colombia and the United States were arrested in early May. in the town of Achter-Drempt, after a raid on a laboratory in the province of Gelderland, where the drug traffickers had handled and stored in a shed a quantity of drugs valued at least 10 million euros.

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"FLOATING LABORATORY"

(Photo: screenshot)
(Photo: screenshot)

A Breda court sentenced three other Mexicans to four years in prison in March for running a "floating laboratory," after traveling to the Netherlands solely to manufacture methamphetamine, a drug "extremely addictive" and the "on board a ship in Moerdijk." more dangerous than there is currently on the market, "stressed the ruling.

The laboratory was "large and professional", had been running for 10 months and could manufacture drugs "on a large scale", and although the detainees "were not the great bosses, they were not subordinates" either, because "they knew what they were doing" and the elaboration of methamphetamine is “a dangerous chemical process"Added the sentence.

Police located at least 70 kilos of crystal methamphetamine and 147 liters of oil on the boat, although they believe that there was more material inside that was lost after the boat sank due to a sudden explosion that occurred during the police search.

"A PLAGUE"

For Max Daniel, head of Operations against Drug Trafficking, the Mexican cartels are "a plague" who is looking for new markets in Europe from the Netherlands, an "attractive commercial" location to reach the European market, due to good Dutch infrastructure and good smuggling routes.

The production of this type of drug is also lucrative for Dutch ecstasy producers: "Foreign earnings are often ten times higher And it's easy for them because they already have the necessary hardware, raw materials, and distribution networks. Only the recipes of the Mexicans were missing, "added Andy Kraag.

Manufacture of synthetic drugs in Mexico. (Photo: SEMAR / CUARTOSCURO)
Manufacture of synthetic drugs in Mexico. (Photo: SEMAR / CUARTOSCURO)

Dutch drug trafficking researcher Ton Nabben assured Dutch television NOS that this situation fits in with the idea of ​​"global economy", and recalled that Mexican cartels are "organizations that operate globally and are constantly responding to supply and demand, "since they can" do it quickly by ignoring the rules. "

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Nabben stressed that the number of methamphetamine addicts is on the rise worldwide, especially in countries like the United States and Australia, making production more interesting for criminal organizations.

"You can see it in the price. A few years ago, a gram cost 100 euros, now it has dropped to 60 euros, almost the price of cocaine, but methamphetamine is purely synthetic, it can be manufactured anywhere and you don't have to move it around the world"He added.

The Sinaloa Cartel and the Jalisco New Generation Cartel They are the main actors, according to the Police, who assure that these groups have been active in the Netherlands for much longer through drug trafficking and money laundering, but it is now that they have seen the fertile ground to grow with the methamphetamine laboratories.

With information from EFE

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