FOUR men have been arrested over a major marijuana growing and shipping operation that dispatched customer orders from Alicante-Elche airport.

The criminal enterprise was co-ordinated in Alicante with the two ring-leaders supervising a marijuana farm and processing unit in Elche.

The gang had a treatment and packing sub-division in Gandia that parcelled up batches to be flown out of Alicante-Elche airport via logistics companies.

The joint operation between the Guardia Civil, the Policia Nacional, and the Tax Agency discovered a sophisticated laboratory in Elche, alongside the marijuana farm.

The site included ‘state-of-the-art’ equipment which converted the drug into oils and powders.

Desmantelada una banda organizada que realizaba envíos de droga por paquetería a través del aeropuerto - Alicante - COPE

Simultaneous police raids at three locations netted over 113 kilos of vacuum-packed cannabis and 5,367 marijuana plants, in addition to the processed drug in bottles and tins.

Officers also seized an automatic sub-machine gun as well as three high-end cars and €9,610.

The arrested men were bailed after an Alicante court appearance.

They have been charged with drugs trafficking, the illegal possession of a weapon, and belonging to a criminal group.

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