Italy: coke smuggling in Parmesan cheese and imported from the Netherlands

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The Guardia di Finanza in Turin dismantled a criminal organization in Italy engaged in large-scale cocaine trafficking in the provinces of Turin and Asti, with branches in Lombardy, Veneto, Tuscany, Sicily and Sardinia. Ten arrests were made and more than 100 kilos of cocaine was seized, which was hidden in rounds of Parmesan cheese.


The Italian military police service Guardia di Finanza started investigating the organization in the first months of 2022. The group was led by a 37-year-old Albanian with “top management positions” and nine co-defendants, who mainly operated in Piemonte and with branches also in other Italian regions.

Import from the Netherlands

An investigation by the investigative authorities showed that the criminal organization was involved in large-scale drug trafficking at home and abroad. The network bought large quantities of cocaine from abroad, mainly from the Netherlands, and transported it to Italy in trailers. The drugs were then stored in storage locations, mainly in Piedmont and other parts of northern Italy. Distribution took place in different Italian regions, via couriers and with the help of a large fleet of vehicles.

Very pure coke

During the investigation, several drug shipments were intercepted, including 100 kilos of high purity cocaine in a motorhome and 25 kilos of high purity cocaine hidden in five wheels of grana padano/Parmesan cheese. According to the authorities, the estimated street value of drugs is at least 20 million euros.

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