Saturday, April 13

The ‘cochazos’ and the million euros in opium of the Spanish Pablo Escobar


In the street of San Blas de Burujón, a Toledo town of 1,300 inhabitants, the neighbors do not leave their astonishment when ABC tells them who lives next door: “That Paco is ‘the Spanish Pablo Escobar’?”. They refer to Francisco, alias ‘Limonero’, arrested by the National Police and considered the largest importer of heroin in our country. In May he will turn 71 and has been in prison since December, when he fell with nine other alleged members of his organization for a shipment of 50 kilos of heroin, linked to the network of the almighty Urfi Cetinkaya, ‘the Paralytic’, the king of this drug for decades.

Francisco HG had lived in a one-story house since at least 2008. He lived alone

-or so they say, because a 38-year-old Moroccan girlfriend was arrested with him-; with the blinds almost always lowered and visited by his children and grandchildren. The children went a few days ago to put in the garage one of the vehicles that ‘Limonero’ parked on the street: a “mercedaco” and an SUV, as well as a modest utility vehicle with which he moved. «Paco drew attention to the big cars he drove -say his neighbors-, but he did not interact much. We saw him just go in and out.”

The agents of the Central Narcotics Brigade of the National Police and the Narcotics Section of the Superior Headquarters of Madrid, responsible for the operation, lower the car to “good cars, but not to look at them again.” He lived without great ostentation, without working, yes, and without too much boasting.

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“Over there!” His children respond when an acquaintance asks about their father lately. In the street of San Blas they have not seen the ‘Limonero’ for about a month, since before Christmas. «The day they took him away, there were some plainclothes agents all afternoon on the corner, they were waiting for him. They arrested him at night, when he got home. They asked him to open the door and he told them that there were no dogs inside and that they could enter safely. There was no commotion, ”recall his neighbors. «We thought it would be because he had black money, because he had been a street vendor. It’s amazing how people can deceive you.”

“You have placed the revolver on me”

“Pablo Escobar died, right?” jokes another patron. He has heard that Paco had been arrested for carrying a few kilos of heroin, “but people talk a lot.” He is left speechless when he learns the reason and the name that the Police have given his neighbor. The agents who arrested the ‘Limonero’ on December 10, after intercepting the ‘courier’ that was transporting the heroin from Madrid to Toledo, They found a pistol and a collector’s revolver in the house. He let them out: «You have placed it on me», in the presence of the court clerk. The falsity of the accusation had an exceptional witness. During the search, he tried to disassociate himself from the drug, and was serious and impassive, according to the investigators.

He had already served prison after being arrested for another 30-kilo heroin consignment in 2001, although he had recovered contacts after being released. It is not easy to import 50 kilos of opium in one fell swoop. Uncut and with a purity above 50 percent, according to calculations, it costs more than 1.2 million euros to bring it and a part must be paid in advance to the Turks. It is bought on demand normally; then the clans cut it down and increase its price and sell it in the Cañada Real and in other Spanish markets, in this case in Castilla y León and Castilla-La Mancha.

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The clan that was to receive part of this shipment has also fallen. It was run in tandem by Enrique F. and his wife, Victoria J. “She is more of a boss than he is; with command and gave clear instructions to subordinates”, say those who saw them in full action. Enrique and Victoria flooded the Cañada Real with heroin, with the micra prepared for the junkies who come daily in the ‘cradles’ of death (vehicles) from various points in Madrid.

Urfi Cetinkaya

‘El Limonero’ traveled to Istanbul in July and September to agree on the details and those trips caught the attention of the US DEA. There he supposedly met with members of the Urfi Cetinkaya organization, although it is not known if the enigmatic capo was present or even if he is still at the foot of the canyon. It is believed that they agreed on the details of the shipment that passed through the Netherlands, the large warehouse of heroin that is sold throughout Europe.

In this investigation against heroin trafficking, promoted by the Toledo Anti-Drug Prosecutor’s Office, Burujón would be one of the vertices of an imaginary triangle. Another is Albarreal del Tajo, six kilometers along a narrow paved road, a propitious route to move without being detected by the agents. In that silent town, also small and without local police, lives Francisco José, the alleged ‘caletero’ of the organization, who was going to guard the merchandise in his house, where the boss and his second were waiting with him until they saw that something It happened on December 10.

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The heroin guard is now free, according to his neighbors, and continues to drive his small car through this town of 700 inhabitants. They were struck by the fact that a family that apparently does not make ends meet buys a new BMW “all at once.” Amador, lieutenant of ‘Limonero’, has his home 15 kilometers from Albarreal. In Barcience they were not surprised by his arrest. According to his lawyer, Eduardo Estévez, he was going to be released this Monday after the Toledo Court admitted an appeal. Three towns, three neighbors related to opium and a king: Paco ‘el Limonero’.


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