Spain police arrest suspected Chinese mafia members
- 16 October 2012
- From the section Europe
Police in Spain have arrested at least 80 people in a nationwide crackdown on Chinese criminal gangs.
The operation, involving more than 300 officers, focused on money-laundering and connected illegal activities such as tax evasion.
Officers reportedly searched more than 100 premises - mainly in the capital Madrid and in Barcelona.
International porn star Nacho Vidal and a Madrid councillor were among those arrested, officials said.
The councillor is from the Fuenlabrada district in the south of the capital, which is home to the huge Cobo Calleja trading estate, considered the biggest Chinese wholesale hub in Europe.
Spanish newspapers published photographs of police carrying out raids at Chinese businesses in the neighbourhood, known as a source of cheap goods from China.
The news agency Efe says an investigation was launched two years ago into imports arriving in Cobo Calleja.
In a statement, the Spanish interior ministry said: "The national police is carrying out a major operation against money-laundering and other crimes linked to criminal networks of Chinese origin in various provinces of Spain.
Valencian porn veteran Vidal gained renown in industry circles for his performances in films including Sexcapades and Nacho Vidal: The Sexual Messiah 2.