Albania Seizes Millions in Assets From Drug Barons

Tirana Police Chief Bernard Caushaj announced on Monday that police had sequestered more than four million euro in assets from two convicted narcotics traffickers.“Based on the evidence collected we sequestered more than 4 million euro in assets, consisting of two luxury hotels, bars, apartments and land titles,” Police Chief Caushaj said, underlining that the operation was spearheaded by the Task Force Against Economic Crime of the Tirana’s Prosecutor’s Office.“These assets are suspected of being the byproducts of the criminal activity of two individuals convicted of trafficking cocaine from The Netherlands and Belgium towards Italy and Greece,” Caushaj added.

One of them, Shpetim Kadana, was arrested in February in Rome, and is suspected of being the kingpin of a narcotics group. During Kadana’s arrest Italy’s financial police sequestered 20 kilos of cocaine and several firearms.

The other suspect, Vasil Bajraktari, had been convicted by Tirana’s district court as part of a prostitution ring.

Since the adoption of a tough anti-mafia law in 2010, Albanian prosecutors have sequestered tens of millions in assets and cash from Albanian drug traffickers, who use their home country to launder the revenues from criminal activity in Europe.

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