The Peruvian National Police (PNP) is currently leading a mega operation
in five cities of the country and raiding several buildings, PNP General and Environment Department Chief Raul del Castillo reported on Tuesday.
Del Castillo revealed that 18 people have been arrested and 200 kilograms of gold (bullion and ore valued at US$10 million) have been seized so far during the intervention.
He indicated that the main operation takes place in Parcoy, located in northern La Libertad region's mountain area, where illegal miners
operate supported by a criminal organization composed of hired killers.
"The gang called Topos, a complete network composed of several groups of criminals operating in the area, has been detected," he expressed.
The chief reported that among the detainees is an Australian citizen of Chinese origin, who —under the facade of being a legal exporter— used to send gold to destinations such as India and the United Arab Emirates.
One of the raided properties is located in Lima's San Borja district. It was also reported that several warehouses in the port of Callao will be raided.
The PNP officer revealed that the gold extracted in La Libertad used to be taken for processing purposes to Piura, Lima, Ica, and Arequipa. Other foreign citizens used to participate in the transfer of cargo as well.