22 Apr, 2024 @ 13:10
2 mins read

WATCH: Moment British drug lord dubbed the ‘Wikipedia Narco’ was arrested in Spain: Police brought down ‘€10m empire’ after seizing a tonne of cocaine – plus 44 cars, 40 Rolexes and 60 works of art

THIS is the moment a notorious British drug lord infamous for editing his own Wikipedia page was arrested in a huge multinational police operation.

Middlesbrough native Brian Charrington, 68, was filmed in his pyjamas at the front door of one of his Valencia mansions with his hands on his head.

Information released by Spain’s Tax Authority has linked him with a plot to traffic 1,165 kilos of cocaine on a sailboat from Suriname to the port of Valencia.

He was arrested in March as part of a raid that netted 31 people, including a retired police officer. They were all subsequently released.

READ MORE: Notorious British drug trafficker Brian Charrington is arrested AGAIN in new police probe on Spain’s Costa Blanca

Brian Charrington gave himself up to police only after brandishing a shotgun last month

The trafficker reportedly armed himself with a shotgun and barricaded himself into his flat, later claiming that he believed the cops were ‘fake policemen’ coming to rob him.

The police at his door included officers from Britain’s National Crime Agency (NCA) and the US’s Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA).

The investigation also uncovered a chilling plot to abduct and murder a member of a rival network, which was never carried out.

A comprehensive search and seizure operation netted a hefty haul from the alleged coke empire of three vessels valued at €4.2 million.

Following that were 44 vehicles, a collection of 40 luxury watches, 60 artworks, 54 mobile phones, a cryptocurrency wallet, three long guns, 44 properties, and a freeze on 74 bank accounts.

READ MORE: MUST READ: British ‘narco’ baron Brian Charrington jailed after Costa Blanca cocaine smuggling retrial in Spain

Video released by the Policia Nacional showed Charrington giving himself up to teams of SWAT police after a stand-off outside his luxury villa.

During the subsequent searches, one keen police sniffer dog even took an immediate interest in a bathroom plug socket, which was pulled out to reveal a hidden stash of bank notes and passports. 

The kingpin’s son, Brian Charrington Jr, slammed the ‘ridiculous’ show of force in communications with the Olive Press.

“Released one day after being arrested after a show of force that was ridiculous,” he said.

“Zero evidence and ruined people’s businesses and traumatised children unnecessarily which we have promptly denounced.”

The elder Charrington was already sentenced in 2021 to 11 years for smuggling nearly 192 kilos of cocaine into an Altea marina but was free on bail pending an appeal.

READ MORE: Infamous British drugs boss Brian Charrington gets his retrial date on the Costa Blanca in Spain

Charrington has been identified as the ‘mastermind’ behind an operation to import over a tonne of cocaine into Spain via Suriname

Yet the prospect of a lengthy spell behind bars has not appeared to deter the 68-year-old from further criminal enterprises, according to the police.

He has been identified as the brains behind a sprawling trafficking operation to import the tonne of cocaine into Spain via Valencia.

Investigators identified a number of ‘experienced criminals’ from eastern Europe linked to Charrington in 2022.

Tapping into their communications revealed the group’s possession of a suspicious sail boat bought for just one euro.

Through liaising with foreign law enforcement and tracking financial transactions, police located the boat in the Canary Islands. 

They monitored the suspects’ movements throughout their transatlantic journey until they made their intervention.

Spanish maritime authorities made a dramatic boarding of two vessels, where authorities found 1,165 kilograms of cocaine cleverly hidden onboard.

The investigation involved over 300 surveillance operations and intercepting more than 100 phone lines.

Charrington is suspected of being the mastermind behind the operation, who boasted a war chest of €10 million to fund its activities.

He used the funds to run the empire; paying for transporting the cocaine, covering operational costs, and keeping his crew happy. 

A trusted right-hand man handled logistics, prepared the boats, and acted as a direct line to the crew. 

Charrington earned the nickname the ‘Wikipedia drug lord’ among Spanish authorities for his habit of bragging about his illegal activities on various internet platforms. 

In a career spanning 30 years, a German court jailed him for seven years in 2003 after convicting him of drug smuggling, and he also spent two years behind bars in France.

Walter Finch

Walter - or Walt to most people - is a former and sometimes still photographer and filmmaker who likes to dig under the surface.
A NCTJ-trained journalist, he came to the Costa del Sol - Gibraltar hotspot from the Daily Mail in 2022 to report on organised crime, corruption, financial fraud and a little bit of whatever is going on.
Got a story? [email protected]
@waltfinc

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