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Expat Gangsters visiting or living on the Costas

Saturday, 30 August 2008

John `The Coach' Traynor (52)
Traynor strenuously denies allegations that he set up crime reporter Veronica Guerin for her murder.Garda and criminal sources allege that Traynor travels regularly between southern Spain, Amsterdam and Brussels to organise large-scale cannabis deals. Traynor, a former fraudster and associate of `The General', Martin Cahill, is believed to have made and spent a fortune from his involvement in the hash trade between 1994 and October 1996. In a phone interview with this reporter he denied that he had any part in Guerin's death.

Peter Mitchell (33)
Mitchell, from Dublin's north inner city, was alleged during two trials to be a member of the biggest cannabis gang that operated in Ireland in the mid-1990s.
Now based in Fuengirola, Spain, Mitchell is wanted by Gardai in connection with his alleged role in the gang. Mitchell and Traynor are believed to be in regular contact.

George `The Penguin' Mitchell (51)
Ballyfermot-born armed robber-turned-cannabis and ecstasy dealer Mitchell is unlikely ever to return home, as the Gardaí, the British police and the IRA are all keen to speak to him if he returns from Amsterdam, where he allegedly continues to run his hash business.Mitchell, a suspected member of the £30 million Beit art robbery gang led by Martin Cahill in the 1980s, served 18 months in jail since he left Ireland in 1996 after being caught during a robbery of computers in Holland. He is reportedly worth €15.3 million. Mitchell was accused in his absence in a court in London of being the organiser of a botched gangland hit on gangster Tony Brindle, a rival of the infamous Daly crime clan. Sources close to Mitchell have denied he was involved.

Tommy Savage (51)
Savage phoned Garda detectives from Amsterdam four years ago and said he had no part in the shooting dead of ex-INLA man Paddy `Teasy Weasy' McDonald in 1992.
However, because of newspaper reports about his alleged cannabis dealing, he has not returned because he says he would not get a fair trial.Savage, a former member of the Official IRA -- the old paramilitary wing of the Workers' Party -- was sentenced to nine years in Portlaoise for armed robbery in the 1970s. A number of his former colleagues have suffered violent deaths. In 1983 Danny McKeown was shot dead outside a Dublin dole office. Later that year Gerry Hourigan was killed in Ballymun. Michael Crinnion was murdered in Cork in 1995. Savage is believed to be close to George Mitchell.

Mick `The Corporal' Weldon (48)
Gardai have sought Weldon since 1993, when he fled the country as detectives prepared to bring him before the Special Criminal Court. He was found by Gardai with a gun allegedly in his possession.Weldon reportedly has his own plane and pilot's licence, and frequently flies to Colombia and Surinam. It is claimed by Garda sources that the former Irish Army corporal from Swords is one of the biggest cannabis barons in Europe.One criminal who knows Weldon insisted: "Mick is just like one of the lads who does a bit of this and that -- he's not an international gangster."Weldon's whereabouts are uncertain. He was last sighted in the Costa del Sol.

Seamus Ward
Ward was named during a trial two years ago as being a member of the same cannabis gang as Peter Mitchell. Ward, from Walkinstown, Dublin, has been missing since October 1996. Gardai believe he may be in the Costa del Sol, but criminal sources claim he is living in southern England.

Jim McCann
Jim "Just call me the Shamrock Pimpernel" McCann is wanted all over the world for a variety of crimes, and is regarded as a colourful figure in the underworld.
The reformed cannabis smuggler Howard Marks wrote in his autobiography that McCann mixed with unsuspecting IRA men and Hollywood actors like James Coburn during his heyday in the 1980s.McCann, originally from Belfast, in 1971 became the first man in decades to escape from Crumlin Road jail, where he was on remand for petrol-bombing Queen's University.
In the intervening period he linked up with international cannabis dealer Marks, while still trading on his reputation as a revolutionary. In 1977 he was arrested in France for extradition to Germany for allegedly bombing a British Army base in Moenchengladbach. A subsequent case failed, thanks largely to protests by French political radicals. Next he turned up in Naas, when Gardai caught him with nearly £100,000 worth of cannabis. When arrested, he would only say: "My name is Mr Nobody. My address is The World."McCann was later freed by the Garda on a technicality. He was last seen in Argentina.

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expat Gangsters:Seamus Ward,Mick `The Corporal' Weldon ,Tommy Savage,George `The Penguin' Mitchell ,John `The Coach' Traynor,Peter Mitchell

John `The Coach' Traynor (52)
Traynor strenuously denies allegations that he set up crime reporter Veronica Guerin for her murder.Garda and criminal sources allege that Traynor travels regularly between southern Spain, Amsterdam and Brussels to organise large-scale cannabis deals. Traynor, a former fraudster and associate of `The General', Martin Cahill, is believed to have made and spent a fortune from his involvement in the hash trade between 1994 and October 1996. In a phone interview with this reporter he denied that he had any part in Guerin's death.

Peter Mitchell (33)
Mitchell, from Dublin's north inner city, was alleged during two trials to be a member of the biggest cannabis gang that operated in Ireland in the mid-1990s.
Now based in Fuengirola, Spain, Mitchell is wanted by Gardai in connection with his alleged role in the gang. Mitchell and Traynor are believed to be in regular contact.

George `The Penguin' Mitchell (51)
Ballyfermot-born armed robber-turned-cannabis and ecstasy dealer Mitchell is unlikely ever to return home, as the Gardaí, the British police and the IRA are all keen to speak to him if he returns from Amsterdam, where he allegedly continues to run his hash business.Mitchell, a suspected member of the £30 million Beit art robbery gang led by Martin Cahill in the 1980s, served 18 months in jail since he left Ireland in 1996 after being caught during a robbery of computers in Holland. He is reportedly worth €15.3 million. Mitchell was accused in his absence in a court in London of being the organiser of a botched gangland hit on gangster Tony Brindle, a rival of the infamous Daly crime clan. Sources close to Mitchell have denied he was involved.

Tommy Savage (51)
Savage phoned Garda detectives from Amsterdam four years ago and said he had no part in the shooting dead of ex-INLA man Paddy `Teasy Weasy' McDonald in 1992.
However, because of newspaper reports about his alleged cannabis dealing, he has not returned because he says he would not get a fair trial.Savage, a former member of the Official IRA -- the old paramilitary wing of the Workers' Party -- was sentenced to nine years in Portlaoise for armed robbery in the 1970s. A number of his former colleagues have suffered violent deaths. In 1983 Danny McKeown was shot dead outside a Dublin dole office. Later that year Gerry Hourigan was killed in Ballymun. Michael Crinnion was murdered in Cork in 1995. Savage is believed to be close to George Mitchell.

Mick `The Corporal' Weldon (48)
Gardai have sought Weldon since 1993, when he fled the country as detectives prepared to bring him before the Special Criminal Court. He was found by Gardai with a gun allegedly in his possession.Weldon reportedly has his own plane and pilot's licence, and frequently flies to Colombia and Surinam. It is claimed by Garda sources that the former Irish Army corporal from Swords is one of the biggest cannabis barons in Europe.One criminal who knows Weldon insisted: "Mick is just like one of the lads who does a bit of this and that -- he's not an international gangster."Weldon's whereabouts are uncertain. He was last sighted in the Costa del Sol.

Seamus Ward
Ward was named during a trial two years ago as being a member of the same cannabis gang as Peter Mitchell. Ward, from Walkinstown, Dublin, has been missing since October 1996. Gardai believe he may be in the Costa del Sol, but criminal sources claim he is living in southern England.

Jim McCann
Jim "Just call me the Shamrock Pimpernel" McCann is wanted all over the world for a variety of crimes, and is regarded as a colourful figure in the underworld.
The reformed cannabis smuggler Howard Marks wrote in his autobiography that McCann mixed with unsuspecting IRA men and Hollywood actors like James Coburn during his heyday in the 1980s.McCann, originally from Belfast, in 1971 became the first man in decades to escape from Crumlin Road jail, where he was on remand for petrol-bombing Queen's University.
In the intervening period he linked up with international cannabis dealer Marks, while still trading on his reputation as a revolutionary. In 1977 he was arrested in France for extradition to Germany for allegedly bombing a British Army base in Moenchengladbach. A subsequent case failed, thanks largely to protests by French political radicals. Next he turned up in Naas, when Gardai caught him with nearly £100,000 worth of cannabis. When arrested, he would only say: "My name is Mr Nobody. My address is The World."McCann was later freed by the Garda on a technicality. He was last seen in Argentina.

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Ernesto Valle will spend nearly 50 years in prison for shooting a man to death two years ago as part of a gang initiation.

Ernesto Valle will spend nearly 50 years in prison for shooting a man to death two years ago as part of a gang initiation.Valle, 21, of the 500 block of Columbia Street in Aurora was sentenced by Circuit Judge Grant Wegner on Friday to 45 years in prison for the gang-initiation shooting death of 19-year-old Jesse Lozano of Aurora, according the Kane County State's Attorney's office. Valle was convicted by a jury of first-degree murder on March 6.Just before 3 a.m. on Aug. 12, 2006, Valle and two other men, including co-defendant Hector D. Delgado, 19, were driving near Grove and Kendall streets in Aurora when Valle spotted Lozano driving a Chevrolet pickup.Valle walked to the truck and fired five shots -- two struck Lozano in the head and one struck him in the back. Lozano was pronounced dead a short time later. After the shooting, Valle returned to a gang party and was inducted into the gang, the release said.Valle’s sentence breaks down as 20 years for the murder, plus an additional mandatory 25 years because a firearm was used during commission of a crime. By law, he must serve 100 percent of the sentence. Valle had been held in Kane County Jail on $3 million bond, which was revoked upon conviction.
“This is a tragic case for two families. The Lozano family and the Valle family are grieving their respective loss of a son. Perhaps this case will make other young men think twice before trying to become a gang member,” said Asst. State’s Attorney Greg Sams, who prosecuted the case.

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Jim Adams and Tricia Adams have been charged federally with the illegal sale of Schedule II prescription narcotics

Jim Adams and 30-year-old Tricia Adams have been charged federally with the illegal sale of Schedule II prescription narcotics consisting primarily of Oxycontin, Percocet and Hydrocodone.
The FBI says undercover agents bought drugs from Jim Adams, a former employee of the Sierra Army Depot. It says Tricia Adams served as the main supplier of the drugs while continuing to work at the depot.Also arrested were 25-year-old Jacob Lahr of Doyle, and 29-year-old Markey Walker, and 41-year-old Jerry Goodman both of Susanville. The FBI says they face unspecified state charges.

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Charles Bowman and William Baugh Officials found over 100 hydrocodone pills and 3 quarters of a pound of compressed marijuana in the suspects' vehicle

Charles Bowman of Buckhannon, and 41-year-old William Baugh of Weston were stopped on Route 50 east of Parkersburg Thursday.Officials found over 100 hydrocodone pills and 3 quarters of a pound of compressed marijuana in the suspects' vehicle.
"We're sitting at the crossroads of 50 and I-77," Sheriff Ken Merritt says, "and we are doing interdiction on the highways, and this will continue."
Both Bowman and Baugh were arrested on charges of possession of marijuana with the intent to deliver, possession of hydrocodone with the intent to deliver.. and conspiracyMeanwhile, Parkersburg city police say the area's narcotics task force arrested a Columbus man Thursday on drug charges.Quentin DeVaughn Davis is charged with delivery and intent to deliver, and is being held on $250,000 bond.
Chief Gerald Board says 20 grams of crack cocaine and a large amount of money was seized in the raid."Other arrests are pending," Chief Board says. "It's an ongoing investigation; it's been going on for for quite some time. We do expect more arrests out of it."Davis was arrested at a Beverly Street residence. He could eventually face federal drug charges.

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David Scott Kiger sentenced to eight years.

David Scott Kiger, 26, Rushville, faced Judge Matt Headley for his sentencing. Following a brief hearing, Headley gave Kiger eight years. Of that eight years, he will serve six, to be broken up into three years in the prison and three years on home detention. Kiger was charged with a Class C felony for his part in smuggling marijuana, cocaine and cell phones into the penal facility where he was employed.
A plea agreement was approved in the case because of Kiger's cooperation as the fact that he had no prior criminal convictions. Kiger's wife took the stand and told the court to consider giving her husband a second chance. She said Kiger was the sole caretaker for his family including his wife, child, mother and grandmother while his father is serving in Iraq. Kiger told the court that he was coerced into the smuggling act after he and his family were threatened by gangs with outside sources.
He said he had smuggled contraband into the prison no more than five times. Headley countered by saying Kiger was probably taught how to deal with such situations during his first week of job training at the prison.
In March, Kiger was caught conducting a drug deal in Cloverdale and was arrested by Indiana State Police. At that time, he was charged with one count of dealing cocaine over 3 grams, one count of possession of cocaine over 3 grams, one count of dealing in marijuana under 30 grams, one count of possession of marijuana under 30 grams, one count of dealing in a schedule II controlled substance, one count of possession of a schedule II controlled substance, one count of trafficking with an offender and one count of neglect of a dependant due to his child being in the car with him when he conducted the offence .Kiger was to report to Putnam County Jail at noon on Thursday to begin his incarceration.

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Deanisha L. Rutherford,pleaded guilty Thursday to attempted criminal possession of a controlled substance and promoting prison contraband.

Deanisha L. Rutherford, 22, of 4104 Digney Ave., pleaded guilty Thursday to attempted criminal possession of a controlled substance and promoting prison contraband. Her sentencing was scheduled for Oct. 30. District Attorney Jon E. Budelmann said she was paid $100 to carry the heroin. The charges carry a prison sentence of up to seven years behind bars, but Rutherford, a middle school tutor in the Bronx, was promised a sentence of shock probation in return for her guilty pleas. Shock probation calls for Rutherford to serve six months in the county jail as part of a five-year sentence of probation. Leone reduced bail to $2,500 cash or $5,000 bond, and Rutherford's family posted bail later that day. Rutherford will stay with her 2-year-old daughter and mother in Boston. The judge warned her to be in court for sentencing or he will sentence her to seven years in prison.

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Ralph Thurston O'Neal III, 33, of Roane County's Midtown area is identified by authorities as the drug network's kingpin

Ralph Thurston O'Neal III, 33, of Roane County's Midtown area is identified by authorities as the drug network's kingpin and is named in all 10 counts of the indictment.Also charged are Michael Currier, 32, of Clinton, Brandon Cooper, 26, and Randy Spears, 43, both of Harriman, and Demond Reed, 37, of Rockwood.
According to a Roane County Sheriff's Department news release, O'Neal and others are accused of bringing in cocaine from Texas, California and Georgia.The drugs were then distributed to others for resale in Roane, Anderson and Knox counties, the news release alleges.Vehicles, cash and weapons were seized during the investigation.Other arrests are expected, Mynatt said."Most of the cocaine investigations pointed to Ralph O'Neal," Mynatt said.

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Jose Jaime Arroyos-Carrillo, 51, a convicted drug dealer, and two of his associates are believed to have worked for Guzman, Mexico's top drug kingpin


Jose Jaime Arroyos-Carrillo, 51, a convicted drug dealer, and two of his associates are believed to have worked for Guzman, Mexico's top drug kingpin and head of the Sinaloa Cartel. They are named in a 29-count indictment that an El Paso federal grand jury handed up in November 2006.All three were indicted on the following charges: conspiracy to import a controlled substance, conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute a controlled substance, importing a controlled substance, possession with intent to distribute a controlled substance, conspiracy to laundermonetary instruments and bulk cash smuggling.Arroyos-Carrillo may currently be in hiding in Chihuahua, Mexico. His associates, Isidro Gomez-Arpero and Juan Samaniego were arrested in 2006 in Mexico, and extradited to the United States last year. On Aug. 14, 2008, U.S. District Court Judge Kathleen Cardone sentenced one of the masterminds of the organization, Gomez-Arpero, to 230 months (more than 19 years) in federal prison, and Juan Samaniego to 210 months (17½ years). The ICE investigation revealed that the Gomez organization, which was based in Ciudad Juarez, Chihuahua, at one time was a large cell of the Guzman international drug-trafficking organization, judging by the large narcotics shipments it smuggled every week through El Paso.The nearly five-year OCDETF investigation was a joint effort by ICE and the Drug Enforcement Administration. Other law enforcement agencies participating in the investigation included: the El Paso County Sheriff's Office High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area Task Force (HIDTA), the Texas Department of Public Safety, the El Paso Police Department, and ICE Offices in New York, Seattle, Birmingham, Houston. The El Paso FBI Office and DEA Strike Force New York also played an active role in this case.The investigation resulted in more than 20 seizures totaling more than 1,000 lbs. of cocaine, more than 2,820 lbs. of marijuana, and two separate cash seizures totaling more than $1.2 million.
More than 30 individuals were identified as active participants of the Gomez organizations' drug trafficking activities. Among the organization's members identified, were two members of the Barrio Azteca Street Gang who coordinated smuggling cocaine shipments into the United States.
"ICE and its law enforcement partners worked relentlessly for nearly five years on this case, which ultimately disrupted the flow of narcotics coming into the country by dismantling a major drug organization based here on the border," said Roberto G. Medina, special agent in charge of the ICE Office of Investigations in El Paso."
To date, 25 of the organization's members, who have been prosecuted by federal authorities in this case, have been sentenced. Their combined sentences total 1,507 months. Fifteen individuals have been prosecuted by Texas law enforcement agencies and sentenced to a total of 80 years.Arroyos-Carrillo, originally from Nuevo Casas Grandes, Chihuahua, is among several members of the organization still at large. Arroyos-Carrillo, whose aliases include Jaime-Lopez-Carrillo, Jaime Carrillo-Fuentes and Jaime Apachuco-Romero, is believed to be in Chihuahua, Mexico.
In 1987, he was convicted of smuggling more than 700 lbs. of cocaine into Arizona. In 2000, he was deported as an aggravated felon through Laredo, Texas. As early as last year, he was known to own property and businesses in Ciudad Juarez.

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Christian Renteria-Ley sold the heroin to Ryan Dean Russell, who then sold some of the illegal drug to Mary Gilliland.

32-year-old Mexican man has been sentenced to more than 11 years in federal prison for his role in the heroin overdose death of a Salem man two years ago.Federal prosecutors said Christian Renteria-Ley sold the heroin to Ryan Dean Russell, who then sold some of the illegal drug to Mary Gilliland.Her husband, 46-year-old Thomas Gilliland, died of an overdose after taking the drug in March 2006.Russell was sentenced to 87 months in prison for his role in the death, and Mary Gilliland was sentenced to 48 months.Anyone convicted of being in the chain of distribution of a drug that results in the death of another person could face life in prison under federal law.

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MacKenzie Phillips, 48, was arrested earlier today (August 27) at LAX International Airport

Thursday, 28 August 2008


MacKenzie Phillips, 48, was arrested earlier today (August 27) at LAX International Airport for alleged possession of crack cocaine and heroin.Mackenzie Phillips has been busted at LAX for allegedly possessing heroin and cocaine. She’s in custody right now.At 10:00 AM, officers responded to Terminal 4, where 48-year-old Phillips was being screened by TSA. During the screening process, some baggies and balloons believed to contain heroin and cocaine were found

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Samantha Krawshuk and others had bought heroin and paid for a hotel room in Avon after a trip to the pawn shop to unload the goods

Samantha Krawshuk, 19, of 2 Spoonwood Road, Canton, was charged by warrant with first-degree larceny and hindering prosecution after she gave police a false statement about the incident, blaming others who weren't involved, Lt. William Tyler said. Family members in Farmington reported to police July 12 that $13,200 in jewelry including a diamond engagement ring, an emerald ring, silver bracelets and necklaces and several other items were missing. Police were able to determine that Krawshuk and others had bought heroin and paid for a hotel room in Avon after a trip to the pawn shop to unload the goods in late July, Tyler said. Krawshuk gave police a written statement identifying who she believed was responsible for the crime, which investigators later determined pointed out people who weren't actually involved. She was also charged with conspiracy to commit first-degree larceny, interfering with an officer and second-degree making a false statement. She turned herself in to police early Wednesday and was held on $40,000 bond until her appearance in Hartford Superior Court later in the day. Tyler said more arrests are expected in the case.

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Gian Singh Sandhu, 29, was convicted of cocaine possession for the purpose of trafficking and importing drugs

Gian Singh Sandhu, 29, was convicted of cocaine possession for the purpose of trafficking and importing drugs by a jury in Sarnia in November 2007. Justice John Desotti said the sentence was necessary to denounce and deter international drug smuggling. Sandhu was arrested July 25, 2003, at the Blue Water Bridge after three duffle bags containing 49 packages of cocaine were found in a transport truck sleeper compartment. The cocaine was described by one customs officer as the largest seizure in her 20-year career. It was 78-to-90 per cent pure and might have sold for $100 a gram on the street. Sandhu testified he knew nothing about the drug, but said a family member had travelled with him before he crossed the bridge. The trucker, a father of two young children, is a timid, docile person vulnerable to manipulation, according to a psychological report presented to the court. Drug couriers tend to be weak and vulnerable, federal prosecutor Michael Robb said during sentencing submissions. Desotti described Sandhu as “unsophisticated” and incapable of organizing the crime, but said such people are often used by traffickers. The sentence is a tragic outcome for a young man with no criminal record, he added.
Truck drivers are recruited because the volume of vehicles means few can be searched at the border for drugs. Loads of perishable produce are the most popular choice because they must be quickly processed, the court was told. Sandhu was hauling California strawberries. An OPP drug expert testified couriers can normally earn $1,000 for each kilogram smuggled.

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Dillon O'Brien, from Clonsilla in Dublin, appeared in court alongside Thomas and Sean Hinchon, of St Ronan's Close, Clondalkin,

Dillon O'Brien, from Clonsilla in Dublin, appeared in court alongside Thomas and Sean Hinchon, of St Ronan's Close, Clondalkin, who are charged with similar offences.Wearing a beige v-neck jumper, a white shirt and dark trousers, prison officer Dillon O'Brien was told in court that these were extremely serious charges.
He is accused of 14 offences between January 2005 and March 2007, including charges of bringing vodka, mobile phones and a controlled drug, diamorphine, to prisoners at Mountjoy.One charge alleges that the prison officer conspired with Wayne Bradley and another person to supply cocaine to David Mulvey on March 12th last year.
The court heard this conspiracy charge alone carries a maximum sentence of 14 years.
The book of evidence has been served, Judge Denis McLoughlin granted legal aid for two counsel and the case has been sent forward to the next sitting of Dublin Circuit Criminal Court for trial.Two other men, Sean and Thomas Hinchon, have also been sent forward for trial on charges including allegations of conspiring with the prison officer.

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Abergil brothers, Yitzhak and Meir, were remanded in custody for 20 days yesterday pending a request by law enforcement in the United States

Abergil brothers, Yitzhak and Meir, were remanded in custody for 20 days yesterday pending a request by law enforcement in the United States for their extradition on murder charges. The Abergils, reputed heads of one of the most notorious crime syndicates in Israel, were brought before a Jerusalem Magistrate's Court judge along with Moshe Malul and Israeli Ozifa, who are also wanted in the U.S. for their alleged role in the killing of an Israeli drug dealer, Sami Atias. A fifth man, Sason Barashi, was also remanded in custody until the necessary investigation is completed and he may be released under house arrest. By law, the suspects may be remanded as many as 60 days in custody, by which point the U.S. law enforcement authorities need to present Israeli courts with a detailed request for the extradition of the five suspects. Police and prosecution sources have said that the extradition process may take as long as a year because of the various court deliberations and other bureaucratic requirements. For the first time yesterday,defense attorneys for the five suspects learned of the charges facing their clients in the U.S. The indictment includes four different crimes that are attributed to Yitzhak Abergil: involvement in the murder of Atias in California in 2003; trade in Ecstasy; extortion and violence against businessmen; and money laundering and fraud.
The 78-page document from the U.S. law enforcement authorities, detailing the charges against the five suspects, charges that Yitzhak Abergil and Malul were involved in the murder of Israeli drug dealer Atias in California in 2003. According to the document, hit men looked for Atias on orders from Abergil, who wanted to avenge Atias' attempt to steal a shipment of Ecstasy pills he was supposed to sell in the U.S. on behalf of Abergil and Malul.
Abergil and Malul are also charged with creating an organization that smuggled Ecstasy, cocaine and hashish from Europe to the United States. Malul and his brother are believed to have secured sources producing Ecstasy in Europe, raised the capital and arranged for the shipment of the drugs to California.

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Gladisse Alexandra Molar arrested a Brazilian woman after finding a haul of three kilograms and 20 grams of cocaine in her possession.

Lebanese authorities on Thursday foiled an attempt to smuggle a huge quantity of cocaine through Beirut airport.
Airport security arrested a Brazilian woman after finding a haul of three kilograms and 20 grams of cocaine in her possession.The woman was identified as Gladisse Alexandra Molar.

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Quirino Paulino Castillo, charged with trafficking almost 1 400 kilos of cocaine into the US.

Quirino Paulino Castillo,charged with trafficking almost 1 400 kilos of cocaine into the US. This has been the biggest drug bust in the history of that country.
It has been reported that the group of 20 witnesses were formally notified by the local Ministry of Justice via a diplomatic note received by the DR Ministry of Foreign Relations. According to Nacional news, “Those people have been notified to declare not only in the Quirino case but in cases also being heard related to the Quirino case itself.”Castillo is a former captain of the DR and is allegedly the leader of a major drug trafficking organisation, which was responsible for smuggling tons of cocaine into the US. Castillo’s total assets amassed to somewhere in the neighbourhood of RD$2 billion. The ex-captain was arrested following the confiscation of 1,387 kilos of cocaine linked to him on December 19, 2004. The cocaine had an estimated street value of RD$900 million (approx. US$26 400). He was consequently extradited to the US for hearings of a drug-smuggling case in New Jersey. Castillo’s extradition is the first under a newly adopted criminal code in the DR, and was the result of a joint investigation between the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration and the DR Government’s National Direction for Drug Control and was sponsored by the US Organised Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force.
Meanwhile, during a hearing in the case held Monday 25, the owners of FAMA Shipping, located in Manhattan’s Amsterdam Avenue, Fátima Henríquez Diaz and Jose de Leon Ortega were given an opportunity to air their pleas. Both owners were extradited in connection with the Castillo proceedings.According to Nacional News, US federal prosecutors claimed they “have sufficient evidence that incriminate the defendants”. The trial is to begin on September 2 where the 20-plus witnesses would face the Manhattan’s South District Federal Court.

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Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) has vowed to end its reputation as a villains' bolt hole.

Wednesday, 27 August 2008

Turkish Cypriot detectives are accustomed to receiving tip-offs from their British counterparts about notorious criminal underworld figures who are heading for the island. Ever since Turkey invaded the north more than 30 years ago, the sun-baked coastline has been a haven for villains happy to exploit the impotence of extradition warrants in an occupied territory.
But as leaders from both the Turkish north and Greek south prepare for next month's talks aimed at uniting the island, the self- proclaimed Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) has vowed to end its reputation as a villains' bolt hole. Ferdi Soyer, the prime minister, told The Times that Britons seeking sanctuary from justice would be deported. The attempt to improve northern Cyprus's international reputation has been welcomed by the Foreign Office and by British police forces, which believe that 15 fugitives are living there. The authorities have been repeatedly embarrassed by the likes of Kenneth Noye, who laundered proceeds of the the Brink's-Mat robbery, and Sean Lupton, a suspect in the £53million Securitas robbery, both of whom were traced to the island. Mr Soyer issued a warning yesterday to criminals who consider northern Cyprus a haven. Sitting in his Nicosia office beneath a portrait of Atatürk, the founder of modern Turkey, Mr Soyer said: “To British criminals, I say: ‘Do not think of coming to northern Cyprus'. “Some think that they can save themselves from justice here. They are thinking wrongly. When we receive information from the British about fugitives here we will arrest them and hand them over to Britain. They are not welcome here.” A few miles away, at police headquarters, Commander Mehmet Ozdamar, first assistant to the TRNC police commander, echoed that sentiment. “Even though the TRNC is not recognised by any government and has no extradition treaty with Britain, we have identified and arrested criminals who have fled here and sent them back. There's no safe haven for criminals here.”
The words are no idle threat. In the past year, two wanted Britons were seized by Turkish Cypriot police, escorted on to flights back to Britain and handed over to Scotland Yard. Peter Roberts, 72, nicknamed “Maggot Pete” for selling diseased poultry, was deported after being spotted working at a car-hire firm. He is now serving a six-year sentence.
Miran Thakrar, 24, was returned to Britain and jailed for 42 years for murdering three men over a cocaine deal in Hertfordshire. Turkish Cypriot police traced him after he boasted in the island's British-style pubs about the shootings. This year Lupton, 47, skipped bail and travelled to the island, where he allegedly tried to launder some of Securitas's missing £32 million in the 45 casinos. The Times established that he had been living in northern Cyprus. When he heard that two Kent detectives were on their way to arrest him he fled across the UN buffer zone and on to Israel. Eight years earlier Noye, now 61, also left his retreat after discovering that diplomatic negotiations would secure his deportation. He was subsequently arrested in Spain. Brian Brendan Wright, the drug baron known as the Milkman because he “always delivered”, took a private jet to Cyprus but fled the island when the authorities realised who he was, having observed that he was moving vast sums of money through their banking system. He was picked up in Spain and jailed last year.
Some suspected criminals, however, are harder to banish. Asil Nadir, who fled to northern Cyprus in 1990 to escape criminal charges after his Polly Peck business empire collapsed, enjoys his freedom because he is a Turkish Cypriot by birth and runs much of the pro-TRNC media. Gary Robb, a suspected drug dealer, has ploughed millions of pounds into an as-yet unfinished building project. The TRNC authorities would prefer him to complete the job before considering his deportation.
Mr Ozdamar is undeterred. He flicks though a file on British criminals as he explains how his officers have testified in the British courts - and how British detectives have returned the favour. Last year a van full of exhibits from Staffordshire arrived in Nicosia to help to secure the conviction of Kemal Kemalzade, a Turkish Cypriot who set fire to his newsagent's business in Stoke-on-Trent in an insurance scam in which a man died. Knowing that he could not be deported from his homeland, he went to northern Cyprus. But judges there agreed to try him and Kemalzade is now serving a ten-year jail sentence in Nicosia. Mr Ozdamar bristles with pride, too, as he explains how intelligence given by his officers to Britain led to the seizure of 350kg of heroin and 13 convictions in British courts.
The Foreign Office, which will not recognise northern Cyprus, welcomed its attempts to clean up its reputation. “We applaud the Turkish Cypriots' determination to ensure that the northern part of Cyprus is not a haven for fugitives from justice,” a spokesman said.

A European Union diplomatic source added: “It is very positive if fugitives are returned from north Cyprus. It seems that the Turkish Cypriot community wants to improve its international reputation and demonstrate its adherence to European standards.

“With a reunification process under way in Cyprus, the Turkish Cypriot community is keen to demonstrate that it takes its international responsibilities seriously.”

Lord Maginnis of Drumglass, the Ulster Unionist and Turkophile who has had a holiday home in northern Cyprus for 24 years - and who has often helped British detectives to trace fugitives there - believes the TRNC should be recognised. “The word has got out among Britain's criminal underworld that the political situation in Cyprus means they can use the loophole in the law to their advantage. It is terribly frustrating for British police forces. But things are changing.” With prospects growing of a political solution to the Cyprus problem - Europe's most intractable dispute - the remaining British fugitives could be forced to flee if EU extradition warrants come into force.
Mr Soyer believes that the TRNC should be allowed to come in from the cold, allowing Cyprus to show the world that Muslim Turks and Christian Greeks can live side by side - to say nothing of the impact that the end of the trade embargo would have on the north's ailing economy.
But Mr Ozdamar raises a hand to block questions about how a peace settlement would affect fugitives still in the north. “There is more and more organised and international crime across the globe. So, police departments all around the world should work together against all types of crimes now. Police are not politicians.”

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Armed police shot dead boss Mark Nunes, 35, after lying in wait outside a bank in Chandler's Ford, Hampshire.

Gang carried out detailed reconnaissance trips and used stolen cars to target cash in transit vans outside banks in at least 18 robberies across the south of England, Kingston Crown Court heard. Its 18-month crime spree was brought to an end in September last year when armed police shot dead two of its number, including boss Mark Nunes, 35, after lying in wait outside a bank in Chandler's Ford, Hampshire.
The getaway driver, Terrence Wallace, 26, was arrested later that day after fleeing the scene, the court heard. Wallace and three other alleged members of the gang, Victor Iniodu, 34, Leroy Wilkinson, 29, and Adrian Johnson, 28, from London, all deny conspiracy to rob. Brendan Kelly, opening the case for the prosecution, said: "This case concerns robberies, sometimes armed, sometimes not, that targeted the carriers of cash in transit, that is guards employed to move money to and from banks and all other retail outlets. "Over an 18-month period of time, this gang netted in excess of £500,000." The court was told Nunes recruited gang members and selected the targets but also joined in on the robberies.
Mr Kelly said: "Despite their skills, their planning and to a degree, their patience, their luck ran out." The Metropolitan Police managed to identify at least some of the culprits and they were followed.
Nunes and accomplice Andrew Markland, 36, were under surveillance as they drove to Chandler's Ford, a small town in Hampshire on September 13.
"Again their victim was a Group 4 Security guard but this time there was a difference," Mr Kelly said. "Armed police officers both undercover and secluded in various buildings in the vicinity of the HSBC bank were watching.
"They saw Nunes point a loaded firearm at the head of the guard and as he did so, he was shot dead to protect the life of the guard.
"As Markland went to pick up the gun, he too was shot dead."
Wallace, of Raynes Park, Wilkinson, of 3 Presentation Mews, 42 Palace Road, Streatham, Johnson, of 79 Abbotts Place, Streatham Hill, and Iniodu, of 297 Derinton Road, Tooting, all deny conspiracy to rob cash in transit between April 27 2006 and September 14 2007.

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Douglas Albrightson, a crew member for an international airline, was arrested on Saturday at Cape Town International Airport

Tuesday, 26 August 2008

27-year-old Namibian man appeared in the Bellville magistrate's court on Wednesday on a drug possession charge.Police pokesperson Captain Dennis Adriao said Douglas Albrightson, a crew member for an international airline, was arrested on Saturday at Cape Town International Airport."He was stopped and searched by police who found 230 grams of cocaine with an estimated street value of R66 171 in his underpants."
Albrightson was remanded to September 3.Police have arrested a number of alleged drug mules at the airport in the past few weeks, Adriao said.

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Joseph Tyrell Sanders and Shamela Ashon Peele charged on August 22nd.

Joseph Tyrell Sanders of Plymouth and Shamela Ashon Peele of Brooklyn, New York were charged on August 22nd. Authorities tell us an investigator purchased 110 grams of cocaine from the two men. They were arrested immediately thereafter. The street value of the cocaine is roughly $11,000. Both men were confined under a $200,000 secured bond.

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Maurice Terrill Robinson,was charged with two counts of felony possession of a Schedule II controlled substance (cocaine)

Maurice Terrill Robinson, 18, of the 700 block of Grover Street, was arrested Friday on cocaine and marijuana charges. Police also served a July 26 warrant for his arrest on another cocaine charge.Robinson was charged with two counts of felony possession of a Schedule II controlled substance (cocaine), misdemeanor simple possession of a Schedule VI controlled substance (marijuana), possession of drug paraphernalia and felony maintaining a vehicle, dwelling or place for a controlled substance.He was taken to Gaston County Jail on a $75,000 secured bond.

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Alfonso "Fonnie" Caldwell faces a statutory mandatory minimum sentence of 20 years imprisonment, up to life, was in custody at the federal detention

Arrested Monday, Alfonso "Fonnie" Caldwell, 37, a former Chester resident, paroled murderer and drug "kingpin" who has eluded "hits" on his life since he was 19, had leased the unit at the Camden/Summit Valleybrook Apartments, according to a pair of federal indictments unsealed Monday.
The Concord apartment, as well as one on Daphne Street in West Philadelphia and a location on West Third Street in Chester, among others, aided Caldwell in running what Acting U.S. Attorney Laurie Magid called an international cocaine operation.
"The name Alfonso Caldwell is well-known to law enforcement," Magid said at a press conference Monday afternoon, announcing cocaine trafficking and money laundering offenses against Caldwell between October 2005 and September 2006.
"Caldwell was not some small-time drug operator," Magid said. "Tens of thousands of dollars were changing hands during drug transactions, money and drugs were being trucked across national borders, and stash houses were set up in residential neighborhoods in Philadelphia and Chester. Thankfully, we have shut down this drug operation."
Caldwell, who faces a statutory mandatory minimum sentence of 20 years imprisonment, up to life, was in custody at the federal detention center.
Authorities apprehended Caldwell early Monday without incident at his Delaware residence - a luxury home with decorative lawn topiaries and ornate hardscape.
Between 2003-2006, federal authorities said more than $500,000 passed through bank accounts attributable to Caldwell. During that same tax period, Caldwell reported "modest income."
In an interview with federal authorities in January 2008, Caldwell admitted that during 2005 and 2006, he paid about $1.5 million to the Mexican suppliers.
Monday night, a senior citizen who has resided at Camden/Summit Valleybrook Apartments for five years and asked not to be identified, said she is not surprised or shocked by much nowadays.
"But I think I would have been horrified to know that was going on," she said of the Mexican visitors two years ago.
When told of the elements described in the indictment, the woman said, "I've never seen anything like what you are describing.
"This is a very lovely area, very well-kept. There is a very strong working staff," she said.
Joining Magid at the press conference was Delaware County District Attorney G. Michael Green and Pennsylvania State Police Capt. David Young, as well as representatives from several federal agencies involved in the probe.
Both Magid and Green said the investigation is ongoing, though they declined to discuss any activities involving Caldwell since September 2006. In August 2006, Caldwell took a bullet in the arm but managed to dodge what Chester police at the time counted as the fifth attempted hit on his life.
Green noted the investigation leading to the indictments began when a Pennsylvania State Police trooper made a vehicle stop on the Pennsylvania Turnpike in Somerset County, about 6 a.m. Sept. 20, 2006.
Confiscated following a search of the vehicle was four kilograms of cocaine - a purchase made the night before in Chester from Caldwell by the driver who is identified as L.W. in court papers.
Between October 2005 and September 2006, authorities alleged Caldwell made eight sales to L.W., totaling 11 kilograms of cocaine to L.W.
Caldwell - charging $20,000 for each kilogram - sold one and a half kilos of sham substance on one occasion. Those sales occurred primarily in Chester and Philadelphia.
On Sept. 30, 2006, Caldwell admitted to state police that L.W. was a cocaine customer, and he implicated another individual in several of the sales to L.W., the indictment states.
At the time, Caldwell gave consent to search a West Philadelphia apartment he used to store cocaine. With a key provided by Caldwell, troopers searched the apartment and confiscated multiple paraphernalia, $10,080 in cash, and four loaded pistols and a 12-gauge shotgun.
Caldwell also showed the troopers a hidden compartment in his vehicle that he used to transport money and cocaine, according to the documents.
Authorities allege that as early as 2006, Caldwell began receiving large shipments of cocaine and marijuana from his suppliers in Mexico. The suppliers used tractor-trailers to make the deliveries.
On some occasions, Caldwell paid the truck drivers for the cocaine. Other times, he paid the suppliers who traveled to Pennsylvania to collect the money from him.
In August 2006, authorities allege Caldwell received about 17 kilograms of coke and 250 pounds of marijuana from the Mexican suppliers. The Mexican suppliers arrived Aug. 1 and stayed at the Concord apartment.
Investigators saw the Mexican suppliers leaving the apartment Aug. 7. They had a large brown box with them. The suppliers drove to a Federal Express/Kinko's in Delaware, where they deposited the box for delivery. When searched, the box was found to contain a coffeepot. Inside the pot was $110,090, according to the indictment.
On Aug. 10, 2006, Caldwell took a bullet in the arm - just hours after three men were held for trial for trying to kill him and four state troopers in June 2006. Authorities in Chester suspected that years of bad blood between two rival drug organizations resurfaced when the drive-by hit on Caldwell outside a West End garage occurred, and failed.
Caldwell was 19 when he was shot twice in the neck as he stood talking with friends on a Chester street corner in 1991.
According to the indictment, Caldwell is currently on parole for a 1990 murder in Philadelphia. He was found guilty of murder as well as possessing an instrument of crime. He was sentenced to serve 10 to 20 years for the murder and two to five years for possessing an instrument of crime.
Assisting in the probe were members from the Drug Enforcement Administration, Immigration and Customs Enforcement, Internal Revenue Service Criminal Investigation Division, the High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area.

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Heshima Lawrence,was charged with possession of crack cocaine.

Heshima Lawrence, 34, was charged with possession of crack cocaine, possession with intent to sell, possession of less than four ounces of marijuana, and interfering with police. He was being held, with bail set at $100,000, pending an appearance Friday in Superior Court in Middletown. Police said they found Lawrence standing outside near his home when they went to serve the search warrant. Lawrence allegedly ran inside a house on Wetmore Place and tried to dump a large amount of crack cocaine down the sink, police said. Detectives on scene shocked Lawrence with a stun gun after a struggle, police said, and arrested him.When police tried to search Lawrence's home at 7 Longworth Ave., his neighbor, Alexander Daniels, 20, of 5 Longworth Ave., tried to stop them from entering, police said. Daniels was charged with interfering with police and is slated to appear in court on Sept. 4.

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Anthony John Richard Lyons admitted importing drugs and possessing drugs with intent to supply at a Court of General Gaol

Anthony John Richard Lyons, 20, of Spring Valley Road, admitted importing drugs and possessing drugs with intent to supply at a Court of General Gaol Delivery on Friday. Rachael Braidwood, prosecuting, said the defendant returned from Liverpool by SeaCat at 9.45pm on April 30 having left the Island in the morning. He went to a house in Farmhill, before travelling by car to a campsite at Greeba, where he was arrested by police. Lyons told officers he was carrying drugs internally and was taken to hospital. A package containing 27.4 grammes of heroin, with a street value of £2,740, was recovered. Lyons told police he agreed to get the drugs because he had debts. He said he was asked by a man if he wanted to make a bit of money by going to Liverpool and bringing back some drugs. He said he met a man in Liverpool was given a small package for £600. Lyons said he was due to be paid £150 to £200 to meet his debts. Advocate Ian Kermode said the defendant collected the package with the intention of passing the drugs to a third party. The transaction did not take place so he did not benefit financially. Mr Kermode said Lyons believed he was nothing more than a drugs mule. Lyons had been very candid and honest with police and took full responsibility for his actions, which were reckless.
His rehabilitation had already begun, said Mr Kermode. Deemster Doyle told the defendant: 'You will have a second chance on your release from prison do not waste it. 'Stay away from drugs and prison. Defendants need to be aware that if they admit their guilt immediately they will get maximum credit, those who plead not guilty and are convicted will not.'

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42-year-old man was arrested in Málaga yesterday three hours after phoning to warn that a bomb had been placed on a Swiss International Airbus 321

42-year-old man was arrested in Málaga yesterday three hours after phoning to warn that a bomb had been placed on a Swiss International Airbus 321 travelling from from Zurich to Málaga. None of the 141 passengers were injured as they were made to evacuate the plane at Geneva airport using the emergency escape chutes. As a result of the incident, the runway was closed for around ninety minutes, forcing eight other flights to be either cancelled or diverted to Lyon.
The man, who was seized at his home on the Avenida Salvador Allende, has been charged with public disorder

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Peter ‘Fatso’ Mitchell was being treated in a hospital on the Costa del Sol for two gunshot wounds to his shoulder

Monday, 25 August 2008


Peter ‘Fatso’ Mitchell was being treated in a hospital on the Costa del Sol for two gunshot wounds to his shoulder, which were not serious, after a hitman tried to whack him in a bar outside Puerto Banus on Thursday night.A year ago it was all so different as he settled down with his street dealer wife Sonia and their two children in a luxury villa worth around €1.5 million.Last August he and Walsh, who had been his girlfriend since the early 1990s, were about to open the Paparazzi bar and restaurant in Nueva Andalucia.
The bar, which was a front for money laundering, is situated in the hills a few miles from Puerto Banus and Marbella which was once a playground for the rich and famous.These days, however, the once trendy ‘port’ is a sleazy centre of prostitution and drug dealing thanks to the likes of Mitchell and his international cronies.Some of the biggest names in organized crime from Ireland, the UK, Holland and Spain received printed invites to the gala opening from “Peter and Sonia” last September.And for a number of months the Paparazzi bar became a popular meeting point for drug traffickers, hitmen and money launderers including the likes of Fat Freddie Thompson and his pal Paddy Doyle.Then Doyle was shot dead by gunmen last February as he was travelling in a jeep in the company of Thompson and Gary Hutch, a nephew of armed robber Gerry the Monk Hutch, near San Pedro on the Costa.It has since emerged, however, that Doyle, a dangerous hitman and bully boy, was shot by a local gang from whom he had ripped off a shipment of cocaine.

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Murder inquiry after a man was shot dead in Finglas last night.The shooting follows a gun attack in Marbella

Murder inquiry after a man was shot dead in Finglas last night.The shooting follows a gun attack in Marbella in Spain last Thursday night in which Peter Mitchell, a former associate of convicted drug dealer John Gilligan, was shot and injured. Two bystanders were also hurt in the attack.
Two masked raiders armed with handguns burst into a busy pub and opened fire as mourners attended a function following a funeral.Gardai said they singled out their victims in the upstairs of the Jolly Toper bar before shooting them a number of times.The dead man was named locally as Paul Martin.Detectives believe the attackers fled the scene in a dark coloured car driven by a third man who had been waiting on Church Street before making off towards the Finglas Road.Superintendent John Harnett, Finglas Garda station, said a car was later found nearby and is undergoing a technical examination.The two men were rushed to the Mater hospital where Mr Martin, who was in his late 30s, died a short time later.The second man, aged 33, is in a stable condition after undergoing emergency surgery at the Mater.A post-mortem examination is due to be carried out on the dead man at the Dublin City Morgue.
Gardai said one attacker was just over 6ft while the other was just under 6ft.
Both men were slim and wearing dark coloured clothing.Supt Harnett refused to say whether the shooting was linked to drug crime or if the dead man had previous criminal convictions but it is understood the attack was linked to a local gangland dispute.Gardai have received information from people in the pub at the time, he added.“We have received great co-operation so far and we are appealing for anyone with information to contact us,” Supt Harnett said.

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Gangland Warfare hits the Costas Russian mafia and British gangsters, have fought for control of the lucrative drugs trade in southern Spain

Gangland war against Dublin criminal John Gilligan has shifted to Spain’s Costa del Sol. Gardai believe that the attempted murder of a former member of Gilligan’s drugs gang in Andalusia was linked to threats against the crime boss. Peter Mitchell was shot outside a bar on a complex in Puerto Banus, near Marbella.Two other people wounded in the shooting were innocent bystanders from Ireland, says the Republic’s Department of Foreign Affairs. One of the two other victims was a 73-year-old Irishman.Spanish police were waiting yesterday to interview 39-year-old Mitchell, who is expected to make a full recovery from his injuries. Mitchell, who fled to Spain in 1996, had been one of a number of gangsters targeted in a major state operation against the Gilligan gang.Security sources in the Republic last night linked the murder bid on the Spanish coast to a new campaign by rival Irish criminals against Gilligan and his associates.Earlier this month it was revealed that Gilligan was receiving 24-hour protection inside Portlaoise to safeguard him from other prisoners.Rival criminals are angry over his recent interview in Irish pop magazine Hot Press, via a mobile phone. This contributed to a security crackdown, which has affected the operations of other gang leaders inside.A Gardai source said: ‘Up until then, a number of jailed criminals were still able to run their empires from inside. Now they can’t communicate with their teams and they blame Gilligan for that.‘Gilligan was badly beaten up by a young Dublin criminal in front of other inmates. And these rivals are not just prepared to go after him it seems; they have the team and the firepower to hunt down the remaining members of his old gang, most of whom are now in Spain.’In recent years the Irish underworld, alongside the Russian mafia and British gangsters, have fought for control of the lucrative drugs trade in southern Spain.

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Juan Carlos Ramirez Abadia, who had been imprisoned for money laundering in Brazil, was handed over to U.S. agents in the Amazonian city of Manaus

Sunday, 24 August 2008

Ramirez Abadia, known as "El Chupeta" (Lollipop) and long considered one of the world's major traffickers, is under U.S. indictment on racketeering, money laundering and murder charges. In one case, he is accused of ordering a hit team to kill a trafficker employed by his organization in Queens, N.Y.
Juan Carlos Ramirez Abadia, who had been imprisoned for money laundering in Brazil, was handed over to U.S. agents in the Amazonian city of Manaus and flown to New York, the Brazilian Justice Ministry said.Acting Drug Enforcement Administrator Michele M. Leonhart, in a statement issued Friday in Washington, labeled Ramirez Abadia "one of the most violent and prolific narcotics traffickers in the hemisphere."The Justice Ministry here said that U.S. officials agreed to limit Ramirez Abadia's maximum prison time, if he is convicted, to 30 years, the most he would have faced in Brazil.Ramirez Abadia is a rare Latin American reputed drug lord who willingly sought extradition to the United States. Once in Brazilian custody, he even offered to hand over tens of millions of dollars in hidden proceeds to Brazil in exchange for speedy extradition.Ramirez Abadia allegedly was among the ringleaders of Colombia's Norte del Valle cartel, which became the country's most powerful drug gang during the 1990s.The sophisticated cartel is accused of organizing the transport of more than 500 tons of cocaine worth more than $10 billion from Colombia to the United States, the U.S. Justice Department said.Ramirez Abadia "controlled a large percentage of those drug exports" and employed "hundreds" in his enterprise, including dozens of killers, the Justice Department said.
The gang killed rivals, bribed police and laundered profits, the Justice Department charged. Ramirez Abadia fled to Brazil after serving a prison term in Colombia. He was arrested again in August 2007 at a luxurious condominium outside Sao Paulo, South America's most populous city.Because of Ramirez Abadia's plastic surgery, authorities reportedly used voice-recognition technology to confirm his identity from wire-tapped phone calls. At the time, U.S. officials were offering a reward of up to $5 million for information leading to his capture.His enthusiasm for extradition prompted speculation that Ramirez Abadia was keen to provide information to U.S. authorities in exchange for a reduced sentence. But he denied in a television interview here that he would testify against former confederates.
"I'm not going to make any deals," he told TV Globo in a jailhouse interview last year. "I'll assume responsibility for my problems alone."
The drug-trafficking trade would continue to thrive, he predicted, despite his latest arrest and the jailing of other bosses. "I'm in prison, but there are people replacing me, then there will be others," Ramirez Abadia told TV Globo. "It will never end."Since Ramirez Abadia's arrest a year ago, Brazilian authorities have auctioned off many of his holdings, including at least four homes. Assets and cash totaling more than $700 million have been seized from his organization, according to the Justice Department.

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Marques Holmes was arrested on one count of Class A felony dealing cocaine and two counts of Class B felony dealing cocaine.

Marques Holmes, 25, 924 W. Seventh St., was arrested on one count of Class A felony dealing cocaine and two counts of Class B felony dealing cocaine.At 3:45 p.m., Hollins was seen walking toward the entrance of a mobile home park near Indiana 212 and Tryon Road. He got into a vehicle and left the park. Officers Shane Washluske and Steven Bailey then stopped Hollins, and he was taken into custody without incident.Hollins, 22, 612 Carlon Court, was arrested on two counts of Class A dealing cocaine and one count of Class B felony dealing cocaine. He is serving an eight-year suspended sentence for Class B felony dealing cocaine. He was sentenced in October 2006 after pleading guilty.At 7:30 a.m., the Narcotics Division went to the home of Felicia Felix, 27, 606 Emily St., where she was taken into custody without incident on a warrant for possession of heroin as a Class D felony.

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Huang Chih Huang, 34, was sentenced to 20 years in prison and fined 60 million riel

Huang Chih Huang, 34, was sentenced to 20 years in prison and fined 60 million riel, or about $15,000. Lin Hui Min, 17, and Wu Chia Hsun, 16, both women, received 12 years and fines of 40 million riel, about $10,000, each.The three are being held at Prey Sar prison, on the outskirts of Phnom Penh, following their arrest in December 2007 at Phnom Penh International Airport, when police confiscated heroin packets hidden under their clothes."The three confessed that they were hired to bring heroin from Cambodia to Taiwan," court deputy prosecutor Sok Kalyan said. "They are poor, and they did that for money."Lawyers for the three were not available for comment.
Center for Social Development court monitor Hang Charya said the three had confessed to transporting the drugs for money.Lor Ramin, secretary-general of the National Authority for Combating Drugs, said Friday that police were so far only able to arrest people who are hired to transport the drugs, instead of breaking up the organized crime network involved.Police are continuing the investigation into the drug network, but would require help from Interpol, Lor Ramin said.
Taiwanese groups committed some of the most drug trafficking in Cambodia, he said.

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Shann Marshall, Brandon Quezergue,and Kinda Brown, arrested

Arrested were Shann Marshall, 23, Brandon Quezergue, 22, Brice Cherry, 27, and Kinda Brown, 22, the mother of the two-year-old boy. All were thought to be living in the apartment or staying there temporarily.Brown was arrested and released on a summons for simple possession. The others were booked with 21 drug possession counts in all and booked into St. Tammany Parish Jail with bonds in excess of $500,000.
All three men face possession with intent to distribute heroin, possession of drugs presence of a juvenile, monetary instrument abuse stemming from the counterfeit money, and possession of Xanax, marijuana and drug paraphernalia.Marshall and Quezergue were also booked with possession of hydrocodone, a powerful painkiller. In addition, Quezergue was booked with possession of a legend drug without a prescription for the drug Soma, a sedative.It was also unclear Wednesday how the suspects obtained the counterfeit money or how much has been circulated.

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Ruben Rios Estrada, nicknamed "El Pit," a reputed enforcer for the Arellano Felix cartel.

Ruben Rios Estrada, nicknamed "El Pit," a reputed enforcer for the Arellano Felix cartel. He was dragged from a bingo table and flown to Mexico City to face possible racketeering charges, Mexican law enforcement sources said.Rios narrowly escaped arrest last week after his convoy outran dozens of police cars in a wild chase across Tijuana, according to media reports. Police were sharply criticized by the local media for allegedly allowing him to escape.Friday's raid, which took place just after midnight, was carried out by more than 20 agents from Mexico's top organized-crime unit, known by its acronym, SIEDO, said a Mexican federal law enforcement official. The agency is a branch of the federal attorney general's office that investigates drug smuggling and has a reputation for honesty among U.S. law enforcement officials.
The unit is dispatched from Mexico City, often to arrest high-ranking organized-crime figures who allegedly are protected by local authorities. The Mexican military provided some support in the raid, said Duarte, the general.Rios, who rarely traveled without a large security detail, was unarmed when he was arrested. His bodyguards apparently were intimidated by the show of force, said a Mexican state law enforcement official who was not authorized to speak to the news media.
Another alleged cartel figure, whose identity was not released, was also arrested, Duarte said.The Agua Caliente racetrack is the showcase property of former Tijuana Mayor Jorge Hank Rhon, a gambling tycoon who owns off-track betting parlors across Mexico. Hank's company, El Grupo Caliente, complained that the raid caused panic among the 1,300 gamblers, though it said it supported authorities' efforts against organized crime.

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Perry Ingomar Toornstra, 28, is serving 15 years after he was found guilty of importing over 4,000 ecstasy pills and 460 LSD trips in 2000.

Perry Ingomar Toornstra, 28, is serving 15 years after he was found guilty of importing over 4,000 ecstasy pills and 460 LSD trips in 2000.On 6 December 2004 he received a package from abroad which contained toiletries and a packet of marsh mellows. A police sergeant, who inspected the package in the presence of the prisoner, noticed that a soap tube was oozing cream and realised that it was not properly sealed. He kept squeezing the container and three capsules fell out of the tube. Toornstra tried swallowing the capsules and was only prevented from doing so following a scuffle with the sergeant.Tests on the capsules revealed that the contained a total weight of 30 grams of cocaine.
Toornstra later told the police that he was expecting the drug, yet he was only expecting four or five grammes. He said that the drug was for his personal use and he could make 20 grammes of pure cocaine from the 30 grammes he was sent.
The court, presided over by Magistrate Lawrence Quintano said that although a considerable amount of cocaine was found in Toornstra’s possession, “the circumstances of the case leave a luring doubt as to whether the defendant had an intention to pass the cocaine to other persons.”In handing down his judgment, Magistrate Quintano also took into consideration “the way it (cocaine) was going to be introduced in a correctional facility where every effort is being made to control the inflow of drugs”.Thus he found Toornstra guilty of possessing cocaine and jailed him for nine months and fined him e600.

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Nikki Beach shooting possible links to Peter Mitchell hit.

Police in Spain are investigating if an overnight shooting in Marbella is linked to a gun attack on an Irishman in the Costa del Sol this week.A 42-year-old man and one other person were shot in the early hours of this morning, outside a disco bar.
On Thursday night 39-year-old Peter Mitchell, a former associate of convicted drugs dealer John Gilligan, was shot in a bar in Puerto Banus by a masked gunman.
He remains under guard in hospital in Spain after narrowly surviving the assassination attempt, while two other men caught up in the shooting received minor injuries.

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Shots were fired as fighting broke out at the Nikki Beach disco



Shots were fired as fighting broke out at the Nikki Beach disco, near Marbella, where guests included the British actress Jennifer Metcalfe from the soap opera HollyoaksA 42-year-old man received hospital treatment after being shot in both legs, while the extent of the injuries to the second victim remained unclear. A third was believed to have needed treatment for a cut hand.One witness said: 'It was absolute pandemonium. People ran for their lives. Chairs and bottles were flying all over the place. Some people ran for cover as it all kicked off, and others just dropped to the ground and covered their heads as best they could to protect themselves. 'The minute they realised someone had been shot there was a mass surge for the door, as people tried to get out of the club as quickly as possible.'
It was the second shooting incident in 48 hours in the area. Last Thursday Peter Mitchell, 39, who has connections to the jailed Dublin gangland criminal John Gilligan, survived after being shot outside a bar on a complex in Puerto Banus, near Marbella. Two bystanders, including a 72-year-old Irishman, were also hit after a masked gunman burst into the bar and fired four shots before escaping in a white BMW. Irish police believe the attempted murder of Mitchell is linked to threats against Gilligan inside Ireland's Portlaoise jail. Mitchell fled to Spain after the 1996 murder of the investigative journalist Veronica Guerin

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'Fat' Freddie Thompson, who has been lying low in Spain for the last number of weeks, has returned to his inner city stronghold

Saturday, 23 August 2008

'Fat' Freddie Thompson, who has been lying low in Spain for the last number of weeks, has returned to his inner city stronghold, no doubt to organise the next phase of a bloody feud that has already claimed 13 lives.It seems unbelieveable that this drug mastermind, who has so much blood on his hands, has now the temerity to attempt to sue gardai for an alleged security breach. With almost breathtaking affrontery, this criminal would use the law he so despises to protect his life and blame it when it's under threat. What is not being denied is that a security dossier with the names and addresses, car registrations and other details has been stolen by an opportunistic thief from a garda car. Thompson has been made aware that the file could be in the hands of his deadly enemies in the long-running feud. As the violence has escalated, many of Thompson's henchmen, fearful of an assassin's bullet, have sought refuge in some of the more affluent parts of south County Dublin. News of the stolen dossier of course will send shivers up their spine and will further enflame an already tense situation. The idea that this gangster could be contemplating an action against the gardai because of a threat to his own life is beyond a joke and highlights the need for the State to take the gloves off and take on these drug barons. When the Government returns after their summer holidays, they should bring in new laws to deal with these organised criminals. Anti-racketeering laws, like the RICO laws that brought organised crime gangs to their knees in the US, are needed. The Government must realise that Freddie Thompson and his ilk represent a deadly menace to the wellbeing of the State.

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George Buchanan - Edinburgh's No.1 drugs baron.

George Buchanan - Edinburgh's No.1 drugs baron.The pug-faced body-builder keeps his sinister occupation secret from his middle-class neighbours in the upmarket estate of Gilbertstoun.But the father of two is to blame for most of the heroin, Ecstasy, hash and speed sold in city housing schemes such as Craigmillar, where he was brought up.Police sources yesterday confirmed Buchanan - known as Dode - commands the city's drugs underworld.But repeated attempts by drug squad officers to end cunning Buchanan's criminal career have ended in failure.More than £90,000 in cash was found in his home during Lothian andBorders Police's Operation Foil purges four years ago. Tests found traces of drugs on the notes.But furious detectives were forced to return the cash when a businessman claimed the money was his savings which Buchanan had been keeping for him.An earlier raid at Buchanan's previous home in Lochend, Edinburgh, uncovered another £30,000 in cash.But again, slippery Buchanan got the money returned when a relative claimed it was the proceeds from selling her home.Buchanan, 46, first came to the police's attention when he was a young thug growing up in Niddrie and Craigmillar.Hewas jailed for eight years in 1974 for the attempted murder of a gang rival when he was a member of the infamous Niddrie Terror street gang.In jail, Buchanan developed a passion for bodybuilding and by the time he was released the once-skinny thug had been transformed in to a muscle-bound heavyweight. One former detective said: "He was a wee nyaff before he went inside."But that all changed when he was released and he tapped in to the growing drugs market. He soon became a name to be reckoned with."In June 1987, Buchanan was jailed for 12 years after a jury found him guilty of being involved in the second biggest ever heroin haul found in Edinburgh.Officers who burst in to a house in Stockbridge found him in bed with the wife of his lieutenant, Raymond Smith.While officers detained Buchanan, Smith was being pursued in a high-speed car chase in which he almost killed young children in his desperate bid to escape.When arrested, Smith refused to co-operate - until it was pointed out by detectives that his boss had been caught in bed with hiswife.His evidence sent Buchanan away for 12 years - but not before Smith was repeatedly stabbed and almost died in an attack the night before the trial was due to start.In the same court, Buchanan was convicted of supplying heroin while he was a prisoner in Barlinnie Prison's special unit.But he was cleared of firearms offences and of a plot to rob Edinburgh jewellers of pounds 30,000.Ever the gentleman, on his way down to the cells Buchanan spat at the jury, for which he received a further sentence.Buchanan has never put in a proper day's work in his life but lives with wife Marie in a smart, £250,000 detached villa at Gilbertstoun, near Portobello.Naturally, the house is in his wife's name because Buchanan is careful not to have any identifiable assets that could be seized by the authorities.The cunning criminal is ultra-cautious in guarding his movements and even uses different vehicles depending on his purpose.When he visits his old stamping ground of Craigmillar and the other housing estates, Buchanan prefers to drive an old L- reg Volvo 440, swapping itfor a top-of-the-range Range Rover with private registration DDD 74 when he visits the gym.Known to have links to west of Scotland drug barons, Buchanan is a regular visitor to Glasgow to arrange consignments.When he is not visiting his mistress, who lives just yards from St Leonard's police station in Edinburgh, Buchanan can be spotted visiting a sauna in York Place and it is thought that he is planning to invest his ill-gotten gains in prostitution.A senior detective said: "George Bell Cowan Buchanan is one of the most active drug dealers in Edinburgh."He spreads misery in the housing estates which are in walking distance from the cosy existence that he lives out in Gilbertstoun.
"He is a nasty piece of work and it is only a matter of time before he reaps what he has sown."He has had a few lucky escapes but his luck will run out one of these days."

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Peter "Fatso" Mitchell and two other men received bullet wounds as they sat drinking beer on the pub terrace near the Costa del Sol


Peter "Fatso" Mitchell and two other men received bullet wounds as they sat drinking beer on the pub terrace near the Costa del Sol resort of Puerto Banus. Four shots were fired by a masked gunman, two of which hit 39-year-old Mitchell in the shoulder and arm. He was last night recovering in hospital. Spanish authorities said his injuries were not life threatening. The shooting happened around 11.40pm on Thursday night outside the El Jardin bar in the Aloha Gardens complex, a popular tourist area in the upmarket residential suburb of Nueva Andalucia. The two other men shot -- aged 45 and 73 -- received flesh wounds to the arm and leg respectively. Both have already been discharged from hospital. Local reports said that the two other victims were Irish nationals. However, Spanish authorities refused to confirm this last night. Spanish authorities said a gunman wearing a balaclava fired the shots after running up to where Mitchell was sitting. He then jumped into a white getaway car, which sped away from the scene and was later discovered abandoned a short distance away. The identities of the other two injured men were unknown last night. However, Spanish officials described them as innocent holidaymakers who were in the wrong place at the wrong time. Mitchell, originally from Summerhill in Dublin's north inner city, is a former lieutenant of jailed drug baron John Gilligan. He fled Ireland in 1996 amid the unprecedented garda crackdown following the assassination of journalist Veronica Guerin. Mitchell was a close friend of another Gilligan gang member, Brian Meehan, who is the only man to have been convicted of Guerin's murder.
The Special Criminal Court, which jailed Gilligan for 20 years for drug trafficking, heard evidence that Mitchell was part of a gang which imported vast amounts of cannabis into the country. Detectives believe Mitchell remained heavily involved in drugs rackets after fleeing to Spain. He had also been running the Paparazzi bar in Puerto Banus until it closed earlier this year after failing to secure a music licence. One witness, Sara Lopez (23), said: "I heard four pops like fire crackers and the next minute I heard screaming and looked up to see an old white car racing away from the scene. "A man was lying on the floor of the terrace outside the bar and writhing around in agony with blood coming from his shoulder as the first of the police cars turned up." All three shooting victims were rushed to the Costa del Sol Hospital in nearby Marbella. Spanish police said the elite Malaga-based Anti-Drug and Organised Crime Unit were assisting local officers in the investigation. Recent reports said Mitchell was selling his €1.2m villa in Puerto Banus following the closure of his pub and a falling out with associates. His bar had been frequented by Dublin hitman Paddy Doyle, who was himself shot dead in the nearby Costa del Sol town of Cancelada near Estepona in February. Doyle, who was originally from Dublin, died after he and his friend Gary Hutch were ambushed in his 4x4 outside an apartment complex. Hutch survived the shooting. Nueva Andalucia is a residential area behind the upmarket Puerto Banus port where thousands of Irish and British expats and holidaymakers party every summer alongside multi-million-euro yachts and expensive sports cars. High-profile summer residents include British PR guru Max Clifford. The area is also home to a string of golf courses, a casino and a bullring. But Irish, British and eastern European criminals behind shady drugs deals and prostitution also frequent its bars and restaurants. And the street where Thursday's shooting happened has been the scene of several violent shootings in recent years.

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Hells Angels remain the most powerful Drug-gang violence that has ripped through Metro Vancouver in recent months has been linked to gangwarfare

B.C.-based organized crime groups are controlling the sale of methamphetamine across Canada and abroad, according to Criminal Intelligence Service Canada's annual report.
Meth production in the province was up in 2007 "primarily to meet expanding international market consumption," said the report, which marks trends in organized crime across the country."The number of super-labs in Canada indicates the capacity to produce significant quantities for foreign distribution," the report said.In 2007, seizures of Canadian-produced methamphetamine were interdicted in Australia, Japan, New Zealand and to a lesser extent, China, Taiwan, India and Iran. The majority of the groups involved in the manufacture of methamphetamine are based in B.C."B.C. is also still a major producer of marijuana for cross-border smuggling, with cocaine being brought back into Canada by crime groups, the report said.
The resulting drug-gang violence that has ripped through Metro Vancouver in recent months is a hallmark of the crime groups, the report said."Violence and intimidation are used to solidify or further a crime group's involvement within a criminal market. It is usually directed either externally against criminal rivals or internally within their own organization to maintain discipline," it said.
"In some instances, lower-level criminal groups will pose a more immediate and direct public safety threat through acts of violence that are often carried out in public places. These violent, lower-level criminal groups are largely but not entirely composed of street gangs, some of which have committed assaults or shootings in public places."
Police say the Hells Angels remain the most powerful organized crime group in B.C.
More than 900 crime groups were identified as operating in Canada in 2007, about the same number as the year before.Their major centres of criminal operation are Metro Vancouver, southern Ontario and Montreal, the report said. Some of the B.C. crime groups are also involved in human trafficking, it said."A small number of organized crime groups, mostly based in B.C. and Quebec, are involved in the facilitation of international trafficking in persons (TIP), it said."Conversely, several street gangs are active within the domestic TIP market for the purposes of sexual exploitation. These groups facilitate the recruitment, control, movement and exploitation of Canadian-born females in the domestic sex trade, primarily in strip bars in several cities across the country."
RCMP E Division media liaison Sgt. Tim Shields said police in B.C. are fighting back against crime groups in the province."Today there are more than 17 police units and government agencies actively working together to combat organized crime," Shields said Friday. "But this is not just a problem for the police to solve in isolation. It is a problem for the entire community to take a stand against."
Shields said the marijuana trade in B.C. is estimated to be worth $6 billion per year."This figure does not include revenue from the sale of crystal meth, cocaine and heroin, and from identity theft, credit card fraud, prostitution, gun smuggling, human trafficking, and money laundering," he said. "But even more alarming is the violent crime associated to organized crime such as shootings in public places, kidnappings and the murders of innocent people."Not only are the gangs involved in drug trafficking, but they are also increasingly committing fraud and identity theft as technology makes it easier."Technology changes very fast and our reliance on technology is growing at a phenomenal rate," RCMP Commissioner William Elliott told a news conference in Montreal. "It is a challenge for us to keep up, which is all the more reason why we need to collaborate more and I think this report is an example of us doing it."The report said wireless technology allows fraud artists to steal payment card information without entering a store. They can gather the information from a point-of-sale terminal inside while sitting in a car nearby. The information is then transferred to illegal debit card factories worldwide within seconds.
The potential for profits is huge, making it very attractive to well-established organized crime groups traditionally involved in activities like drug trafficking.
"As we move more and more to the Internet and the technology being used, the risks are increasing. A lot of the public are not very careful about their identity," said Elliott, who is also the chairman of Criminal Intelligence Service Canada (CISC), a grouping of 380 law enforcement agencies across Canada.
"One of the reasons why organized crime has been as successful as it [is], is because they are very adaptable. It's not as if they have given up any of their traditional markets but, as new technology and as changes occur in society, they are also changing and taking advantage of the areas they can exploit

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Juan Carlos Ramirez Abadia aka Lollypop was extradited to the United States on Friday to face racketeering charges

Colombian drug lord Juan Carlos Ramirez Abadia was extradited to the United States on Friday to face racketeering charges, a year after he was captured in a luxurious hide-out on the outskirts of South America's largest city.
Ramirez Abadia was flown before dawn from a prison in central Brazil to the Amazon region jungle city of Manaus, where he was handed over to agents of the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency, said Romeu Tuma Jr., a high-ranking Justice Ministry official.
Tuma said that Abadia was being flown to New York City in a U.S. government plane.
Tuma said the extradition was not revealed earlier "for obvious security reasons."
The remote maximum security prison where Ramirez Abadia was staying was attacked earlier this year by armed gunmen apparently trying to free him and Brazilian drug lord Luiz Fernando da Costa.Prison officials said earlier this month that they foiled a plot to stage another attack on the prison as well as a wave of kidnappings to terrorize judicial officials.Ramirez Abadia has acknowledged trafficking cocaine and prosecutors say his Norte de Valle cartel shipped 500 metric tons (550 tons) of cocaine to the United States from 1990 to 2003.Abadia radically altered his facial appearance with repeated plastic surgeries in an attempt to avoid capture in Brazil. But his own words gave him away, thanks to advanced voice recognition technology that has become a key tool in the war against drugs and terrorism.U.S. agents last year managed to confirm his identify by using the equivalent of a vocal fingerprint, according to Sergio Alambert, who served as Ramirez Abadia's lawyer immediately after his arrest.Brazilian police had closed in on Ramirez Abadia's properties in and around Sao Paulo, and were probing his alleged laundering of the Colombian cartel's drug profits. But because of his surgeries and multiple aliases, they lacked the positive identification needed for an arrest warrant.They got their break by taping his telephone conversations, the lawyer said. Colombian officials provided a recording they had of Ramirez Abadia, and both sets of recordings were passed to the DEA, which made the match.Police then swooped in on 22 locations in six Brazilian states, catching Ramirez Abadia in a luxurious home with a gym, sauna, plasma TVs, a swimming pool and nearly US$1 million in stashed cash.Tuma said U.S. officials promised not to seek the death penalty for Ramirez Abadia — a pledge Brazil requires before it sends accused criminals to other nations.
Ramirez Abadia — nicknamed "Lollypop" — told authorities last year he wanted to be quickly extradited to the United States so he could avoid having to first serve a 30-year Brazilian sentence for money laundering, gang formation and corruption. But Tuma said Ramirez Abadia later withdrew the request.
American officials sought Ramirez Abadia's extradition under a 2004 racketeering indictment issued by a federal grand jury in Washington, D.C., that could bring a lengthy sentence.The U.S. indictment accuses Ramirez Abadia and other gang members of routinely killing rivals and customers who failed to pay for drugs. He also was accused of killing a gang member he suspected was an informant for the DEA.
Ramirez Abadia fled to Brazil four years ago after a drug conviction in Colombia and allegedly ran the cartel's money laundering operation here.Brazilian authorities have auctioned off much of his riches, including a yacht that sold for about US$1 million and a collection of watches and pens that fetched more than US$1 million.

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David Quick, from Essex, was found guilty of conspiracy to supply class A drugs

Friday, 22 August 2008

David Quick, from Essex, was found guilty of conspiracy to supply class A drugs after a retrial at the Old Bailey and sentenced on July 25.
Police arrested Quick in a Dartford layby on the A282 when he pulled over to make a handover with the rest of the group.Officers searched the lorry and found 42kg of cocaine.Quick, who denied the charge, told detectives he had no idea about the drugs but the court heard how he took the truck onto a ferry in France having met with 37-year-old Michael Linker to pick up the stash.But when Quick arrived to meet 34-year-old Alister Morin on April 4 last year, police moved in as Linker tried to retrieve the cocaine from the truck.Morin was arrested in Bow Arrow Lane, Dartford, after being tracked driving to the transfer point.Quick had originally stood trial with Morin from Essex, in April.Morin was convicted for conspiracy to supply class A drugs and imprisoned for 15 years but Quick faced a retrial.
Linker from Bristol, and ring-leader, James Scarciglia, aged 30, from Harrow, had both admitted the same charge and were jailed for 14 years and 15 years respectively.
Another gang member - Jason Young, aged 37, of Bath Road, Dartford, was sentenced to eight years after pleading guilty to the same charge for acting as a courier.

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Ricky Sam Sisneros the shot-caller for a Torrance street gang

Convicted Ricky Sam Sisneros of being an ex-felon in possession of seven firearms as well as ammunition and drug counts. The jury also found true allegations the crimes were gang-related.
The 45-year-old Sisneros was described during trial as the shot-caller for a Torrance street gang, but defense lawyer Caree Harper told jurors he was only a "junkie, bike-riding older man."

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Gangster Kalid Dib, shot dead during a failed armoured van robbery on Tuesday.

Hundreds of mourners have gathered at Lakemba Mosque for the funeral of Kalid Dib, shot dead during a failed armoured van robbery on Tuesday.About 200 friends and relatives marched in a procession from a funeral parlour next door and into the mosque just before midday.A group of young men carried Dib's white casket, draped in a green religious sheet, up the steps and inside.The mourners included the clearly distraught immediately family of Dib, as well as controversial Sydney cleric Sheik Taj el-Din al Hilaly.After a half-hour service the crowd re-emerged and watched as the coffin was placed in a hearse and driven to Rookwood Cemetery, where he is to be buried.A small contingent of police and Sydney media stood by as the crowd walked up Wangee Road and then dispersed to drive to Rookwood.Dib and another man were fired at when they tried to rob three Armaguard guards of cash at the National Australia Bank on George Street, Parramatta, on Tuesday.The hunt for the two other men involved in the shooting continues today with police saying the security guards who fired are expected not to be charged.A prominent youth worker in the south-west, Fadi Rahman, also attended the funeral.Afterwards he told the Herald that Dib, whom he had known through the local Lebanese muslim community, had become sucked in a life of crime."These young kids have nothing. They emulate their older brothers, relatives, start acting up, and eventually they get recruited by real crims."
He said a lack of resources for local youth - Mr Rahman's Lidcombe youth centre and gym was forced to move last year after a stoush with Auburn Council - means there is limited help for troubled youth."There's no PCYC [police citizens youth club], no youth centre. What do you expect the result to be? Of course somebody is going to die. This time it was the young bloke, next time it could be the security guard.
"We've been speaking to the Premier, we've been speaking to MPs, but it comes to nothing. What will it take? Look at our streets, they're like ghettos."
Mr Rahman, who was involved in crime before he turned to youth work, said he understood how kids were sucked into criminal activity."They come from poor families, they have nothing and they get depressed. I know what it's like. You come to a state where your life is a dead end and you're willing to do anything to get out, even commit armed robberies."

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Gangster John Gizzi yesterday blamed the credit crunch for stopping him paying back his ill gotten gains to the state.

John Gizzi yesterday blamed the credit crunch for stopping him paying back his ill gotten gains to the state.Lawyers for Gizzi, 36, also blamed bad headlines in the media on him being unable to sell his house in St Asaph to raise the full amount of cash he owes.The 36-year-old faces a default sentence of eight years unless he finds £2.6m under a proceeds of crime order made against him in March last year for every asset he owned.At a Proceeds of Crime Hearing to discuss why the money had not yet been paid back yesterday, Prestatyn court heard that so far £300,000 had been realised.But several offers had been made and withdrawn for his principal asset, Bronwylfa Hall at St Asaph. Originally it was offered at £1.75m, but was now “a bargain,” the court heard.District Judge Andrew Shaw agreed to adjourn the case until the end of September.He said the reason why he was allowing the adjournment of the default hearing was that Gizzi had not been shown to have wilfully obstructed the sale of any of his assets.Gizzi was locked up for five and a half years in January 2006 for wounding, assault and conspiracy to supply counterfeit cigarettes.
At the time police described him as a bully who preyed on the vulnerable and who was regarded locally as an untouchable millionaire crook. They had vowed publicly to relieve him of his ill-gotten gains.Kathleen Greenwood, seeking recovery of the assets, told the judge it was correct no criticism of Gizzi could be made for the withdrawal of offers for the mansion.Ian Till, for Gizzi, said lurid headlines had appeared about the property and it had been close to sale as recently as last week, but fell through. Market forces and headlines had worked against him. But it was now the subject of a new offer.“Mr Gizzi shares the frustration of the assets recovery team,” declared Mr Till.Six houses had been sold, offers had been made for some other properties, and a watch was being sold at a specialist auction. “Mr Gizzi is wanting desperately to realise these assets,” said Mr Till.
There was a large police presence at the court. Several members of the Gizzi family were in the public seats and John Gizzi smiled frequently to them through the glass screen of the dock.At the end of the hearing he was handcuffed and led away to return to prison.The hearing was adjourned until the end of September, but the case will also come before a judge at Mold Crown Court earlier in the month.

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Kenneth Watkins, 28, also known as "DJ Blaze" and "DJ Hog Head Cheese" testified that he is "one of the hottest DJs in the U.S.,

Kenneth Watkins, 28, also known as "DJ Blaze" and "DJ Hog Head Cheese" testified that he is "one of the hottest DJs in the U.S., claiming to be 'world renowned'" according to a news release issued Wednesday by the U.S. Attorney's office in Dallas, which prosecuted the case."He is affiliated with the Ideal Talent Agency in Atlanta, which, according to its web-site, features well-known Hip Hop artists such as 3-6 Mafia, 50 Cent, Jay-Z and Mike Jones. Kenneth Watkins has been featured on XM Radio," the release said.
Watkins' celebrity status apparently didn't register much with the jury. What did sway them, though, turned out to be the $3 million in cocaine he was caught hauling.
Following a two-day trial held before U.S. District Judge Robert Junell in San Angelo, a jury deliberated less than two hours before convicting Kenneth Watkins on both counts of an indictment charging conspiracy to distribute and possess with intent to distribute five kilograms or more of cocaine and possession with intent to distribute five kilograms or more of cocaine, announced U.S. Attorney Richard B. Roper of the Northern District of Texas. Watkins, 28, faces a maximum statutory sentence of life in prison; he is scheduled to be sentenced by Judge Junell on November 7, 2008.Watkins, who is also known as "DJ Blaze" and "DJ Hog Head Cheese," took the stand at his trial and stated that he is one of the hottest DJs in the U.S., claiming to be "world-renowned." He is affiliated with the Ideal Talent Agency in Atlanta, which, according to its web-site, features well-known Hip Hop artists such as 3-6 Mafia, 50 Cent, Jay-Z and Mike Jones. Kenneth Watkins has been featured on XM Radio. The government presented evidence at trial that Watkins, and his co-defendant, Steven Alexander Aaron, 37, were arrested on April 22, 2008, after their eastbound vehicle, a tractor-trailer car hauler, was stopped by a West Central Texas Interlocal Crime Task Force Officer on Interstate 20, near mile marker 266, in Taylor County, Texas, because it didn't have secure chains or a license plate. Aaron was driving the vehicle; Watkins was the sole passenger. The car hauler was loaded with a maroon Chrysler minivan and a black Range Rover. After obtaining Aaron's consent, the officers searched the tractor-trailer and the two loaded vehicles, and discovered six bricks of cocaine in a black backpack in the rear hatch of the Range Rover. Testimony at trial showed that Watkins had hidden the backpack in the Range Rover. The street value of the cocaine in the backpack is approximately $3 million.
Court documents show that on two previous occasions, Aaron and Watkins had transported substantial quantities of illegal drugs from Phoenix to Atlanta. Aaron and Watkins would generally meet in the Atlanta area and load vehicles onto the car hauler and transport them to Phoenix, specifically using the vehicles to conceal the illegal narcotics from law enforcement. Upon arriving in Phoenix, several individuals would load the vehicles with illegal narcotics and Aaron and Watkins would then drive the tractor-trailer car hauler back to Atlanta.
Steven Alexander Aaron pled guilty prior to trial to conspiracy to distribute and possess with intent to distribute five kilograms or more of cocaine and is also scheduled to be sentenced on November 7, 2008.
U.S. Attorney Roper praised the excellent investigative efforts of the West Central Texas Interlocal Crime Task Force, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), the Drug Enforcement Administration, the Texas Department of Public Safety, the Abilene Police Department, and the Taylor County Sheriff's Office.

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Philbert Truong was gunned down outside the Red Jacket nightclub

The two young men charged in last month's shooting death of Victoria student Philbert Truong were among the 11 suspected associates of the violent Red Scorpion gang identified by Victoria police during a recent drug sting, sources close to the investigation said yesterday.Dubbed Operation Mongoose, the initiative kicked into gear on July 22, three days after Mr. Truong was gunned down outside a View Street nightclub.On Tuesday, police said they had seven of the 11 alleged Red Scorpion affiliates in custody. They later acknowledged that only five of the people arrested in the sting have been linked to the gang.On condition of anonymity, sources close to the investigation acknowledged that the other two who are "believed to have some affiliation with the Red Scorpion gang" are the suspects in Mr. Truong's death. They were taken into custody minutes after the shooting. Victoria police Constable Colin Brown refused comment Tuesday when asked about possible links between Mr. Truong's murder and the wave of drug arrests.Yesterday, Victoria police Sergeant Grant Hamilton called the murder investigation "completely separate" from Operation Mongoose."It's before the courts, and it would be inappropriate to speculate on any association between these arrests and the incident on View Street," Sgt. Hamilton said.He declined to specify which suspects are believed to be Red Scorpion affiliates, noting that police departments can be sued for incorrectly identifying someone as a gang member.Mr. Truong was gunned down in the early morning hours of July 19 as he and a group of friends were leaving the Red Jacket nightclub.
Two other young men believed to be friends of Mr. Truong were wounded in the attack.
Somphavanh Chanthabouala, 22, of Surrey and a 16-year-old who can't be named are facing charges of first-degree murder and attempted murder in connection with the shooting.The seven people facing drug possession or trafficking charges, or both, as a result of Operation Mongoose are: Mark Hubahib, Kurtis Schmidt, John Supena, Ashley Appolinario, Raphael Jose Blanco, Hisham Bennink and Justin Houchen. The suspects range in age from 18 to 23. Mr. Houchen was convicted of selling crack cocaine outside Victoria City Hall in July and sent back to the Lower Mainland. He is a under court order to stay away from Victoria.Victoria police said on Tuesday that Red Scorpion affiliates began aggressively targeting the local drug trade this spring.
Red Scorpion district "managers" had equipped junior drug runners with vehicles and cell phones as part of a dial-a-dope drug-dealing business, similar to Red Scorpion operations on the Lower Mainland, police said.
The Red Scorpion gang formed in 2000 inside a youth detention centre. Upon their release, the group of Asian males began a "dial-a-dope" operation in the Coquitlam area. In 2006, RCMP officers arrested several Red Scorpions and charged them with drug trafficking.
The investigation, titled Project E-Poison, produced 10 guilty pleas.
"That was the project that was thought to have really brought about the demise of the early manifestation of the Red Scorpions," said Sergeant Shinder Kirk of the Lower Mainland's Integrated Gang Task Force. "But again, given the drug situation not only within the Lower Mainland but the province and certainly nationally, we had a coalescing of people under that name and off they went again. That speaks to the draw of the drug trade."
Police don't know how many members the Red Scorpion gang has, or how far the gang's reach is.Sgt. Kirk said the "franchising" model used by the Red Scorpions to bully their way onto the Victoria drug scene is nothing new to the B.C. drug trade.
"We've seen it in organized crime," Sgt. Kirk said. "They may have an individual who has ties there that's already part of the group, or there's somebody already in the community who's engaged in the drug trade who sees an opportunity to now connect with someone who has the capacity to import or move larger shipments. We have a two-way street."

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