The National Police has broken up a gang of violent robbers who would prey on innocent victims along the AP-7 motorway.
Some 16 people have been arrested in the operation, mostly of Romanian nationality, with one Spaniard amongst the group, charged with at least 18 crimes, including one where a woman from Morocco suffered a miscarriage after being struck by one of the robbers at the Santomera service station in Murcia.
The Specialist Violent Crime Unit from Madrid and the Organised Crime Group of the Judicial Police of Alicante conducted the so-called 'Operation Filipinos', developed in four phases, ending with the capture of 16 suspects, all Romanians, except for a Spanish citizen.
The robberies were conducted over a wide area, including Elche, Altea, Torrevieja, Alicante, Calpe, Guardamar del Segura and Callosa de Segura, in the province of Alicante, as well as Murcia and Totana, in the neighbouring region, mostly along the AP-7 motorway network, and an additional two robberies believed to have taken place in Portugal.
The officers in charge of the case have recovered various items of jewellery including rings, earrings and watches, as well as cash in euros, U.S. dollars and other foreign currencies. Officers have also seized 300 grams of marijuana, electronic equipment, phones, video and photography cameras, tools and receipts amounting to 12,000 euro, with pawn jewellery documents worth over 20,000 euro.
Those involved are 14 men and two women, aged between 24 and 65 years of age, some of whom are known to the police, and have collectively clocked up some 65 previous arrests.
The detainees are charged with crimes of burglary, robbery and participation in a criminal organization, and causing reckless abortion. The investigation remains open, as officers have not ruled out their involvement in other crimes, nor have they ruled out the involvement of others.
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