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Finnish authorities bust drug gangs, seize 2.8m€ of amphetamine

The NBI said Finnish and Dutch gangs are behind the largest-ever drug bust in Finland's Pirkanmaa region.

Police drugs lab in Tampere. Image: Poliisi

Finland's National Bureau of Investigation said it suspects that a criminal organization of nearly 40 individuals worked together to smuggle amphetamine, ecstasy and cocaine into Finland last year.

Investigators said an extensive smuggling operation was discovered last September when a parcel of some 20 kilograms of amphetamine was intercepted as it was being transported from the Netherlands to Finland's Pirkanmaa region. Five suspects were arrested in that incident, according to police.

Police said the bust is the largest in the region's history and one of the biggest in the country.

Large caches of amphetamines, other dangerous drugs

Following a preliminary investigation about the first bust, the gangs are also suspected of further imports of the drug amounting to a total of 50 kilograms of amphetamines with a street value worth some 2.8 million euros, according to police.

The NBI said the gangs also imported other illicit drugs such as 5,000 tablets of ecstasy and some five kilograms of cocaine.

Some of the confiscated drugs were hidden in the body of a car, according to Finnish police. Image: Poliisi

There are a total of 37 suspects, including 23 people from an organised criminal group in Finland and 14 individuals from a criminal outfit based in the Netherlands. Eight of the suspects also face possible money laundering charges, police said.

Finnish police officials said they made the busts in cooperation with Europol, and EU criminal justice agency Eurojust in particular.

The case against the suspects is anticipated to be handled by Pirkanmaa District Court sometime in April or May.