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Seven tons of cannabis: France probes former head of anti-drug agency

Staff Writer |
The former head of the French Central Office for Combating Illicit Drug Trafficking (Octris) Francois Thierry has been placed under investigation.

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This is for alleged involvement in trafficking drugs, the Paris public prosecutor's office said on Friday.

Thierry, who ran Octris between 2010 and 2016, is being investigated for "complicity in the acquisition and transportation of drugs and in the export of drugs by an organized gang," French media reported.

The investigation convened Thursday afternoon with Thierry being questioned by examining magistrates on the record seizure of seven tons of cannabis on October 17, 2015, in the 16th arrondissement of Paris.

The Paris prosecutor's office swiftly opened an investigation after discovering that this large-scale drug delivery from Morocco was part of an operation carried out secretly by Octris.

Thierry argued that the operation was part of a secret plan to infiltrate a drug trafficking network, and that French judicial authorities were informed about it.

He was left free on Friday under judicial control, according to media reports.

In an interview with French news channel FranceInfo, Francis Szpiner, Thierry's lawyer, called the allegations "formidable hypocrisy" that "has certainly put a stop to the fight against drug trafficking."

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