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Czech court sends international drug trafficking gang to prison

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Ostrava, North Moravia, June 2 (CTK) – The Regional Court in Ostrava sent 11 members of an international gang of traffickers in the medicines needed for the pervitin (methamphetamine) production to prison from two to 12 years on Thursday.

The court also expelled most of the defendants from the Czech Republic indefinitely.

In 2013 and 2014, the gang illegally imported up to 300 kilos of medicines from Bulgaria and Turkey of which 50 kilos of pervitin could be made. Such amount would be sold on the black market for about 50 million crowns.

The highest prison sentence of 12 years was imposed on Bulgarian Mityo Goshev Angelov, boss of the gang comprised of Bulgarians, their offspring born in the Czech Republic and a Czech girl-friend of one of the defendants.

However, a number of their accomplices have not been revealed or they are prosecuted separately, including those who were purchasing medicines in Bulgaria.

Angelov should have been given a lower sentence actually since he cooperated with the investigators and helped them find other perpetrators guilty.

However, the judge did not appreciate his effort. She said he had confessed and started cooperating with the police when they had already gathered enough evidence.

State attorney Daniela Srbova, for her part, admitted that the gang boss’s help was important in some points of the charges.

Five gang members were sentenced to ten, 11 and 12 years, three were given nine and eight years and another three were sentenced to two to four years behind bars. One defendant, who served as the gang’s courier once only, was just expelled from the Czech Republic.

The verdict has not taken effect yet. Nine defendants appealed it on the spot, while two gave up their right to appeal. The state attorney took some time for considering an appeal.

The police caught the gang, which delivered tablets to pervitin manufactures in the Czech Republic, after some of its clients ended up in prison. They helped the police trace the Bulgarian traffickers.

The police deployed a secret agent under cover in the operation. Using a false identity, he repeatedly pretended interest in purchasing medicines needed for the pervitin production.

Detectives arrested the gang members after they handed over 29 kilos of the Cirrus medicine for 1.25 million crowns to the agent. This amount would suffice for up to six kilos of pervitin.

According to the state attorney, the gang members had divided roles. Some of them secured the medicines purchases, often from Turkey where their price was 50 percent lower, some worked as couriers and others were sending money abroad. Another gang member was in charge of the distribution of medicines in the Czech Republic.

Some of the defendants delivered medicines to the pervitin producers in exchange for the drug that they were selling then.

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