Macedonia’s Public Prosecutor's Office said on December 1 it has discovered the biggest laboratory producing synthetic drugs in Southeast Europe in the northwestern city of Tetovo. The lab, operated by a Macedonian-Serbian criminal group, was found after pre-investigative operations in the Skopje and Tetovo regions.
Macedonia, alongside Albania, Montenegro and Croatia, are among the Balkan countries where drugs are produced or stored for trafficking through Bosnia & Herzegovina to Europe, according to data from the US department, released in March. Albania, once Europe's marijuana capital, has achieved significant success in stamping out drug cultivation.
Albania, Bosnia and Serbia are also on the US State Department’s list of major money laundering countries. Their financial institutions have allegedly been involved in currency transactions involving significant proceeds from drug trafficking.
During the latest operation in Macedonia, the prosecutor’s office found a facility for the illegal production of synthetic drugs and seized large quantities of drugs, as well as raw materials for production, the office said in a statement.
The lab was set up by a criminal group of Macedonian and Serbian citizens, involved in the illegal production, processing and dealing of narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances.
The drug was intended for sale and distribution in Macedonia, Serbia and other countries.
This was the tenth organised criminal group discovered by the Public Prosecutor's Office this year.
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