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Saturday, January 21, 2023

One of the 'Super Cartel' Leaders, Edin "Tito" Gačanin Was Freed 2 Months After His Arrest in Dubai

"Socalj" for Borderland Beat


Two alleged drug traffickers, one said to be a leader and another a high-ranking member of the European “Super Cartel” have been released just two months after being arrested in Dubai. The release of the two men, reported yesterday for the first time by Dutch media, has shocked and angered Dutch authorities who believed the significant US involvement in the case would force the UAE to deport or extradite both men.

In late November Edin "Tito" Gačanin, a Dutch-Bosnian national described by the DEA as one of the Top 50 drug traffickers in the world, and Zuhair Belkhair, a Dutch-Moroccan accused of trafficking huge amounts of cocaine through the port of Rotterdam, were among 49 suspects arrested in a massive, highly-publicized, international police operation. Their arrests took place in Dubai.


Police said that "Tito" was one of the 6 “High-Value Targets” captured during a series of raids coordinated by Europol, the DEA, and multiple police forces across Spain, Belgium, the Netherlands, and Dubai, United Arab Emirates.

But, it has been revealed that authorities in Dubai have released Gačanin and Belkhair, leaving officials baffled. 

Edin "Tito" Gačanin

Gačanin, 40, nicknamed “Tito”, was one of the key leaders of the so-called “Super Cartel” comprised of Irish, British, Italian, Bosnian, Dutch, and Chilean traffickers, until his arrest during an operation police dubbed “Desert Light”. He also led the "Tito and Dino Clan" organization. He obtained cocaine from the now-dismantled Colombian Norte del Valle Cartel and then independent Peruvian producers, according to a Bosnian police official. He was initially based in the Netherlands, is also a citizen of Bosnia and Herzegovina, and was arrested in Dubai during the operation. 

Edin's father Miralem Gačanin was connected with a person named Arnoldus Josephus Van Horsen in Holland. In 2008, Edin's father passed away and Edin began to take over his affairs. The Dutchman Van Horsen connected Edin with several important people and his work in trafficking started. Edin had hired Bosnian special forces men to be his bodyguards. He donated equipment to the entire police force unit via the government in Sarajevo.

He was also charged with importing 8,000 kilos of raw chemicals used as precursors in the production of amphetamines. The materials entered Europe via the Port of Antwerp, Belgium, and were directed to the Netherlands. A criminal investigation was started against him after authorities intercepted Sky ECC messages. “Due to the Sky chats, it is also suspected that the man was involved as organizer, broker, and financier in the import of 739.5 kilos of cocaine from Durban (South Africa) to Rotterdam,” they added. “This also includes a batch of approximately 1,800 kilos of cocaine imported via the port of Hamburg, Germany in 2020 with a destination in the Netherlands,” Dutch police said.


“The DEA thinks he’s a top 50 trafficker, we think he might be in the Top 5 European traffickers,” a European police official stated last year. “He controls significant production capabilities in Peru. At least 5 cocaine production labs are directly controlled by "Tito" and some local partners. Control of labs is incredibly rare for European traffickers, in fact, I can't think of another, and this allows him to source large quantities of cocaine at wholesale prices,” said the cop.

Yet he was freed completely, neither on bail nor facing extradition, on December 29, 2022. Claims in the Dutch media stated that the Netherlands failed to provide proper extradition paperwork within 40 days, despite Dutch prosecutors arguing the paperwork was properly submitted on time. “We know the stories about the documents being submitted too late. That is not true. We are working to find out what exactly is the cause," spokesman Wim de Bruin told Het Parool.

Zuhair Belkhair was granted bail around the same time, while he awaits the extradition process to the Netherlands, according to a statement from his lawyer, Guy Weski, to local media in the Netherlands.
“At the moment, the client has indeed been released after payment of bail. He is awaiting extradition proceedings,” Weski told the newspaper Het Parool. Guy Weski is the son of Inez Weski, the advocate lawyer for Ridouan Taghi, another Super Cartel figure in the Netherlands.

The Weski law firm in the Netherlands has represented several figures of the Super Cartel and other criminals including Dutch arms dealers with the 'Ndrangheta and other traffickers.

But the situation with Gačanin, whose Dutch attorney has so far refused to comment, is far less clear, according to Dutch prosecutors and law enforcement sources, who told VICE World News it appeared the request for his extradition had been rejected outright. An international law enforcement official confirmed Belkhair had been released on bail but said there has been “little clarity,” as to the “status or location,” of Gacanin.


“This is frustrating and infuriating for the Dutch and the Americans,” said the Belgian police official of the release of the two men. “The involvement of the DEA in [the operation] was supposed to get the Emiratis on board, they’d received assurances the UAE judiciary was taking this seriously.”

In the past, UAE and Dubai authorities have been quietly criticized by prosecutors in multiple countries for allowing a slew of major cocaine traffickers from Ireland, the UK, Morocco, and the Netherlands to operate openly with little fear of arrest. As a result, over the last year, the UAE has begun clamping down on mega-rich criminals using Dubai as a bolt-hole and to launder money.

Adding to the tension between the UAE and the Netherlands, it seems, according to the Dutch prosecutors, that both men have disappeared and might have left Dubai for some unknown location. Belkhair theoretically cannot leave the UAE while the extradition process remains ongoing, while it appears that Gacanin no longer faces any legal issues in the UAE and could travel freely to another country. “We don’t know where the two suspects are now. We have no information about their whereabouts and their possibilities to cross the border,” an OM spokesperson told the online news portal NU.nl.

“Dubai keeps insisting that Belgium and Holland need to negotiate a proper treaty,” said the Belgian cop. “But they have moved incredibly slowly despite our requests, then use the excuse that there’s no official agreement or procedure. And so these cocaine bosses remain free.”


Other Leaders of the Super Cartel

Gačanin and Irish mob boss Daniel Kinahan, are now the only major members of what the DEA described as a “Super Cartel”, to remain free. The other members, Dutch trafficker Ridouan Taghi, Ricardo Riquelme Vega “Rico the Chilean" and Italian Camorra leader Raffaele Imperiale, all spotted alongside Kinahan and Gacanin at the Irish man’s 2017 wedding in Dubai by a confidential informant, have since been jailed or are on trial.

Ricardo Riquelme Vega “Rico the Chilean"

Ricardo Vega "El Rico" was the cartel's main supplier of cocaine from South America until his arrest. He is serving 11 years in the Netherlands.

Raffaele Imperiale

Imperiale was arrested in 2021 in Dubai and extradited to Italy after a months-long diplomatic fight that included multiple Italian officials flying to the UAE to negotiate in person. Imperiale recently began cooperating with Italian authorities.



Ridouan Taghi

Ridouan Taghi is on trial for 6 murders in a specially built high-security courthouse nicknamed “Ze Bunker,” on the outskirts of Amsterdam and is suspected of ordering a slew of other killings including the 2021 murder of prominent Dutch journalist Peter de Vries in central Amsterdam. Dutch officials were only able to try Taghi after members of his family in Morocco accidentally murdered the son of a famous Moroccan judge in a case of mistaken identity.


“Taghi would probably be sitting in Dubai right now but he fucked up and killed the son of a [Moroccan] judge,” said the Italian law enforcement source. “That meant the King of Morocco got involved and sent his guys to Dubai. The UAE might ignore the Dutch but they aren’t going to deny another Arab king revenge. That’s how Taghi got sent to Holland.”

Christy Sr. and Daniel Kinahan

Daniel Kinahan and his family are said to have fled Dubai ahead of the massive arrest operations and possibly relocated east to Asia. Christy Kinahan, Sr. had tried to move to Zimbabwe years prior as part of an airline deal involving front companies and decommissioned Egyptian military aircraft.

Sources Vice, Borderland Beat, Borderland Beat, Borderland BeatIstraga.ba, Weski Advocates

Graphics by HEARST & Socalj


27 comments:

  1. The world most powerful drug Baron in the last 100 years JGL was captured guaranteed similar fate is in their destiny 🔮👩💋

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    1. Never dont compare a rat to a real boss

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    2. 10:40 no that's the benefit of moving dope to Europe more or less the US isn't coming for you. Watch these guys will all squeak away and these guys weren't the biggest in Europe which is crazy to think.

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    3. El Mayo is one of the most powerful drug kingpins who remains free

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    4. baby girl cata just trolling every time and these knuckle heads keep falling for it.

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    5. Let me fix that for you…the baby raper and drugger and raper of pre teen and 13-14 year old girls, JGL, is among the most disgusting pedophile drug criminal scumbags of all time. He is currently crying like a little bitch because he claims he is being tortured in an inescapable gringo concrete box. JGL was responsible for the kidnapping, torture, mass rape, mass murder and drug trafficking on scale with many of histories genocidal maniacs. IF YOU RESPECT JGL YOU RESPECT A BABY RAPIST!! That’s fact and cut and dry!

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    6. El chapo wasnt even the most powerful in his own cartel. El mayo was and is.

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    7. 11:04 you wrong..this guys are the biggest players in Europe

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    8. 03:52 culturally and traditionally 13 year olds are of mating and marrying age. Waiting till 18-21 + to be an “adult” is a recent phenomenon

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  2. This people is real power sometimes chapo didn't and wont ever have lol 😆

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  3. these guys are really fucking powerful. and tito is so powerful in bosnia, a corrupt,poor nation.

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    1. They all work for someone bigger in the Government.
      Just like chapo but he got screwed anyway and made an example of off him. Chapo was an informant for the US just like MAYO and his snitch sons in witness protection
      They get to be that powerful because they let them, but eventually they all get captured or killed

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    2. 2:28 Bosnia😂 hahaha Doesn’t even exist… Bosnia is equivalent to El Salvador or Haiti or Guatemala haha

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  4. Supposedly UAB and Dubai have supposedly been protecting a terrorist criminal scumbag from Mumbai for many years named Dawood Ibrahim.

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    1. I though Dawood has been in Pakistan for a while.

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    2. Dawood is the King in Dubai and Pakistan

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  5. U.A.E. is incredibly corrupt. They are one of the best countries to launder drug money and don't like to cooperate in money laundering cases. Mexico doesn't even come close to the U.A.E. on any corruption scale.

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  6. The Serbian/Montenegrin Kavac Clan along side with Edin Gacanin are the most powerful and dangerous players in Europe

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    1. 12:45 😂😂😂😂😂

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    2. They are not called Kavac clan.

      Small place in Montenegro was birth place of one of the biggest crime organizations in world right now. On pair with mexican cartels, operating in whole EU, Croatia as main place because enter Croatia you entered EU no borders.

      200kgs of cocaine in Spain went missing, and man called Radoje Zvicer (Google) asked his good friend and co leader Jovan Vukotic (killed in 2022 in Turkey) to just return the euros value of 200kg and its all fine, he feeling not responsible refused, and 2 clans got created Kavacki(as in Kavcani), and Skaljarski (as in Skaljari). Since 2014 around world South America, whole EU, Asia and Africa they kill each other. Latest victim was leader of Skaljaraca Jovan Vukotic gunned down in Turkey.

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    3. Google man called Velja Nevolja(he was main killer of Radoje Zvicer) he would tape his killings, and share it with friends and victims friends using sky aplication. He was arrested in Serbia in February 2022 , images are really strong. What they found in basement of house of death.

      He would sent pictures and even wrote. Look at this Mexico in Serbia. With smiley face.

      After the scandal Radoje Zvicer fleed country of Montenegro and it is believed he is either in Ecuador or Colombia.

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    4. And to add, there is bizar conversation between to men in late Spetember 2020 where Zvicer asks Velja to get meat grinder and his would be assasins who tried to kill him in Ukraine in early 2020 turns into meat and makes cevapi (a tradional meat dish) to sent to him.

      A man called Milan Ljepoja connected with Pink Panther and mafia clans that supplied weapons to Ukrainian cops for attempted killing dissapered it was later found in cell phone he really was turn into meat and sent to Zvicer, who even wrote he was great with mustard (real fuccking story) google it whole.

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    5. 12:02 i know very well their story!
      Kavacki klan probably the most dangerous and powerful in Europe

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  7. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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  8. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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    1. Its just truth, they are one of biggest criminal groups or as you like to call them in South America/USA Cartel, here there is no name cartel. Its criminal group, group of organized crime members. And Kavcani are one of the biggest in EU and World for sure. The boss of Kavcani man called Radoje Zvicer is for sure one of the worlds biggest drug suppliers and criminals at the moment. He is living somwhere in South America. Government thinks in Ecuador or Colombia.

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