The National Drug Control Centre (NDC) has arrested and charged eight people who allegedly cultivated marijuana in the Czech Republic for several years and sold it mainly to the UK and Ireland.
According to the police, they sent the drug shipments regularly, at least once every 14 days. The value of the consignments multiplied with exports and reached around 20 British pounds (about 580 crowns) per gram of dried marijuana in the UK, the NPC said in a press release today.
Officers uncovered the marijuana trade in an operation called “Post” and worked with colleagues in the UK, Ireland, and Germany.
According to detectives, the suspected group of Czechs was operating in northern Bohemia, growing marijuana in a so-called “indoor manner,” then processing and selling it. The deals abroad were arranged by the group’s two leaders, who also distributed tasks to other members.
The police described the suspects’ activities as “the entire chain of activities, from setting up indoor cultivation facilities, growing the cannabis plants themselves, buying them from pre-arranged growers, processing them, packing them in leak-proof foils, hiding them in the bowels of kitchen utensils, and sending them abroad under false identities”.
According to the police, the suspects sent the shipments of marijuana powder in quantities of up to one kilogram from the Czech Republic by air or land. The buyers then sent the money hidden in small electronic goods for the delivered goods. The suspects placed orders for shipping services online under fictitious names. They constantly changed shipping companies and never delivered the shipment to addresses that could be contacted, police said.
During house searches and searches of other premises, officers seized a large number of mobile phones and computer equipment, 14 weapons, including bullets, and money in various currencies in the hundreds of thousands of Czech crowns, in addition to seven cultivation plants, 16 kilograms of marijuana, 449 cannabis plants, and 200 grams of cocaine.