AN Italian mafia drugs lord and his two lieutenants have been arrested in Valencia Province.

The leader has been detained by the Policia Nacional in Valencia City, hiding under a false name.

His cohorts were arrested in Ribarroja de Turia, with false Italian and Macedonian passports discovered at their address.

Authorities described the gang leader as running one of ‘the most important criminal organisations in Italy’.

His associates had been prosecuted in Albania for attempted murder after firing off a round of shots at a car driver, who was uninjured because he was in a bullet-proof vehicle.

Spanish police were tipped off in July 2021 that the fugitives had sneaked into the country.

The gang ran a large-scale drugs distribution network across Europe, with the goods supplied by South American organisations.

The Policia Nacional said it was very difficult to track down the trio as they were well-versed in staying under the radar.

There was also serious concern about any violent resistance to being arrested since they had extensive experience of using firearms.

No more details were provided about the arrested men or how police located them.

It is presumed the trio will go before the National Court to be processed for extradition to Italy.

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