Fri, Jun 03, 2005 - Page 23 News List

Spanish police arrest 70 in raids on drug laboratories


Spanish police have broken up a drugs network that made as well as trafficked anabolic steroids for sports use, and arrested 70 people in the largest drugs bust of its kind, the ministry of the interior said on Wednesday.

According to the ministry, six drug manufacturing laboratories were raided in Spain's northeastern Catalonia province where police discovered 30 million products including the stimulants EPO, clenbuterol and nandrolone following Operation Mammoth.

Although the products are designed to increase muscle mass they can have potentially lethal side effects.

The products were destined for sale to gyms, sports and fitness clubs at prices far lower than the market norm, the station added.

Only two of the labs had an operating licence and were directing part of their production toward the underground market.

Some had a capacity of 20,000 doses per hour of anabolic steroids and hormonal treatments, the ministry said.

It said that the "high quality" but synthetic products were destined for distribution in Spain but also "various EU countries."

Police took away assorted equipment, including weightlifting benches, as well as 200,000 euros (US$240,000) in cash and impounded several luxury vehicles.

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