NEWS

Three policemen linked to drug ring

Minister says breakup of massive racket marks launch of zero-tolerance policy

Public Order Minister Nikos Dendias declared on Tuesday that the police force is intent on pursuing a zero-tolerance policy in cracking down on lawlessness on all levels after officers cracked a massive drug-dealing racket involving at least three policemen.

Describing the operation as “a very great success,” Dendias remarked that “the few corrupt officers within the police force are being traced by their own colleagues and facing the consequences of the law.”

His statement came after a massive police operation over the weekend that led to 29 arrests in Thessaloniki, Volos and Agrinio. Those detained included the head of the anti-drugs squad in Volos and officers from the immigration unit in Thessaloniki and the security police in Agrinio.

Police arrested fellow officers on the basis of incriminating evidence drawn from the latter’s cell phones which had been tapped. According to sources, the officers can be heard during the taped conversations offering suspected drug dealers varying amounts of drugs in exchange for information about the activities of other drugs rackets or for favorable testimony in defense of suspects implicated in drug dealing.

Most of the calls were made to the suspected leaders of the ring, three Albanians, according to police who are seeking other fellow officers in connection with the racket.

Four convicts serving time for drug-related offenses in jails around the country have also been implicated in the ring’s activities.

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