Finland police bust drug ring tied to Swedish organized crime

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Finnish police said Wednesday that they have busted a major smuggling operation linked to Swedish organized crime, making 30 arrests and seizing 100 kilos of drugs.

“Helsinki police and the National Bureau of Investigation have uncovered a large international drug trafficking organization,” the police said.
Investigators said the group had used trucks to transport over 300 kilos of cocaine, amphetamines, ecstasy pills and cannabis into Finland.

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Thirty people were arrested with 17 still in custody, police said.

The suspects have Swedish, British, Somali, Serbian, Norwegian, Iraqi, Ukrainian, Kosovar, Turkish and Finnish nationality.

Police said on Wednesday that Swedish criminals are collaborating with Finnish street gangs.

“It is a new phenomenon that Swedish organized crime is so heavily involved in the Finnish drug trade,” they said.

Sweden has been gripped by violence between rival gangs vying for control of the arms and drug trade, with frequent bombings and shootings linked to vendettas and turf wars.

Cracking down on street gangs has also been a major campaign issue for the parties that make up Finland’s right-wing coalition government, which came into office in June.

“This government has recognized the rise in youth and gang crime as a serious problem,” Interior Minister Mari Rantanen said in August.

The government plans a comprehensive program of measures by the end of the year to curb gang crime, she said.

While Finland consistently ranks as the happiest country in the world, it also has one of the highest rates of young people dying from drug-related deaths in the EU.

Between 2006 and 2021, the number of drug-related deaths in Finland more than doubled to 287, with opioids mostly commonly to blame.

Swedish Prime Minister Ulf Kristersson vowed last week to use the military if necessary to defeat criminal gangs, with innocent victims and children being killed in the violence.

Read more: Irish navy makes record drug bust from cargo ship

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