US and European law enforcement have disrupted a massive international drug trade and money laundering operation run by Hezbollah, the US Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) said in a news release.
The operation was part of the DEA’s Project Cassandra, which targets a global Hezbollah network responsible for the movement of large quantities of cocaine in the United States and Europe, controlled by Abdallah Safieddine and Adham Tabaja, the release explained.
“The DEA today announced… arrests targeting Lebanese Hezbollah’s External Security Organization Business Affairs Component (BAC), which is involved in international criminal activities such as drug trafficking and drug proceed money laundering,” the release said on Monday.
The DEA said authorities succeeded in uncovering and disrupting a massive Hezbollah drug and money laundering scheme that stretched across seven countries.
“These proceeds are used to purchase weapons for Hezbollah for its activities in Syria. This ongoing investigation spans the globe and… highlights the dangerous global nexus between drug trafficking and terrorism,” the release noted.
The Hezbollah BAC network had also established business relationships with South American drug cartels, such as La Oficina de Envigado, responsible for supplying large quantities of cocaine to the European and United States drug markets, the DEA pointed out.