Spain targets drug-smuggling hub with anti-crime measures

November 16, 2018 GMT

MADRID (AP) — The Spanish government is seeking to improve security in a notorious drug-running hotspot on its southern coast, around Gibraltar.

Interior Minister Fernando Grande-Marlaska said Friday that the government will spend an extra 28.5 million euros ($32.3 million) this year and next on more police and better security equipment in the Campo de Gibraltar region.

Crime gangs operate openly in La Linea de la Concepcion. They have turned the run-down Spanish town in the shadow of the Rock of Gibraltar into a key European entry point for Moroccan cannabis resin.

Grande-Marlaska says unemployment in the area is running at around 25 percent. To help rid the area of crime and delinquency, he says the government will launch an economic regeneration program, including job creation schemes and investments in local infrastructure.