Major operation in Carinthia: daily raids with 200 heavily armed police officers

Last Updated on July 26, 2023 by Thomas Schumacher

A highly significant police operation has sent shockwaves through Carinthia as heavily armed officers, including the elite Cobra special forces, have been conducting daily raids in Villach and Feldkirchen since July 3. This unprecedented operation, which continued for three consecutive days until July 5, has been hailed as the largest criminal police endeavor in Carinthia’s history.

Keeping details closely guarded for investigative purposes, the authorities finally disclosed crucial information during a press briefing at the State Police Headquarters on July 26. According to Gottlieb Türk, the head of the Carinthian State Criminal Investigation Department, approximately 200 officers have been diligently executing daily missions as part of this extensive operation. In total, the operation has resulted in 25 targeted searches in brothels, with two of them carried out at sauna clubs, leading to the apprehension of nine suspects. The focus of this major undertaking has been squarely on cracking down on drug-related crimes, pimping, and money laundering.

The arrested individuals, predominantly Romanian nationals, include six men aged between 35 and 48, a 30-year-old woman, a 42-year-old Italian man, and a 30-year-old Austrian woman.

Simultaneous raids were conducted

In a display of unwavering commitment to law enforcement, the heavily armed officers conducted simultaneous raids at numerous locations in Villach on July 3. Establishments such as pizzerias and kebab shops, along with several private residences, found themselves at the center of these meticulously planned operations. Eyewitnesses described a scene reminiscent of an action movie as the Cobra special forces, equipped with their characteristic masks and powerful weaponry, took strategic positions outside the targeted locales.

On July 4, the operation intensified with yet more thorough searches conducted at buildings, private residences, businesses, and restaurants. By July 4 morning, the operation expanded its reach to Feldkirchen, where similarly heavily armed officers were seen patrolling the premises of local establishments.

Notably, this operation was long in the making, with months of preparation invested by the police force. The initial scheduled date for the operation had been weeks earlier, but for reasons undisclosed, it was postponed until July 3. Alongside the Cobra elite, members of the special task force from various units across Carinthia assembled to bolster the operation’s manpower.

In total, the police seized cocaine with an estimated street value of around 70,000 euros, in addition to approximately 57,000 euros in cash.

The swift and coordinated response of the authorities is being lauded, as it demonstrates a resolute commitment to ensuring the safety and security of the region’s residents. The impact of this major operation will reverberate throughout Carinthia, underscoring the state’s resolve to confront criminal elements head-on. As the investigation progresses, the public eagerly awaits further updates on the outcomes of these far-reaching raids.

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