Police arrest international gang in $686 million medicinal cannabis scam


Madrid: led by police forces spain has arrested a gang that allegedly defrauded victims in 35 countries of 645 million euros ($686.41 million) in a scam centered on cannabis plants for medicinal use.
The Spanish National Police said in a statement that the gang set up a marketing system and attended international cannabis fairs to convince victims to invest in the system.
The operation proceeded with the help of Europol and police forces in five other countries.
Nine suspects, who have not been named, were detained on April 11 on suspicion of Danger In Spain, Britain, Germany, Latvia, Poland, Italy and the Dominican Republic.
Spanish police spokeswoman Silvia Garrido said, “The business model offered by this organization consisted of using capital transferred from investors to develop partnerships to finance the cultivation of cannabis plants.”
“With this system, they promised victims profits of between 70% and 168% per year, depending on the strain of cannabis they invested in.”
The British National Crime Agency (NCA), which took part in the operation, said that 180,000 people invested money in “Juicyfields”, which it called “a notorious and elaborate Ponzi fraud scheme”.
The NCA also said a 42-year-old man appeared in a London court on April 11 to begin extradition proceedings.
Police said luxury cars, hotel parties and music videos were used in advertising campaigns to promote the scheme and that victims were lured to legal cannabis plantations that were involved in the scam.
Police conducted the raid in 2022 but have not said whether any suspects have been charged with a crime.
Police blocked bank accounts containing 58,600.00 euros and 116,300.00 euros in crypto currencies, and 106,000 euros in cash were recovered. Assets worth 2.6 billion euros were confiscated.

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