During the reading of the 57-page judgment, the presiding judge said that the facts contained in the indictment were proven, as well as the addition that the court made in the last session, stating that the six men "acted in accordance with a pre-agreed plan”.
The judge justified that the penalty applied taking into account the fact that the defendants did not have a criminal record and their social profile.
The criminal offense of drug trafficking varies between four and 12 years.
The six men of Portuguese, Spanish, Colombian and Dominican nationality, who began to be tried at the end of October, in the Court of Viana do Castelo, for the of the crime of drug trafficking, attended the session via videoconference, at the establishment Lisbon and Caxias prisons, in Oeiras, where they will await the final judgement.
At the end of the session, questioned by Lusa, the defense guaranteed that they will appeal the decision.
The indictment resulted from the “Operation Trapport” carried out by the National Unit for Combating Narcotics Traffic (UNCTE) of the Judiciary Police (PJ).
That investigation culminated, in March 2020, with the arrest of the six men, of Portuguese, Spanish, Colombian and Dominican nationality, and the seizure of around 400 kilograms of cocaine, which would amount to more than 1.6 million of individual doses, in a warehouse located in the industrial area of Vila Nova de Muía, in Ponte da Barca, in the district of Viana do Castelo.
The cocaine in its pure state, coming from the Dominican Republic, which, according to the court's chief inspector who coordinated the investigation, would have a value of 20 million euros, was found inside the warehouse covered by pallets of pineapples, hidden in the false bottom of the container that arrived at the port of Setúbal, was sent to the port of Leixões and then followed, in a truck, to Ponte da Barca.