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Monday, 7 February, 2000, 19:57 GMT
UK seeks extradition of 'drug baron'

Costa del Sol The Costa del Sol, where Greene has lived incognito


Customs investigators are seeking the extradition from Spain of a man alleged to be behind one of the UK's biggest drugs operations.

Former armed robber Mickey Greene, is being held by police in Barcelona, but is wanted in the UK for questioning in connection with a multi-million pound drug running and money laundering operation.

It is also claimed that he is wanted for questioning about alleged links to corruption allegations involving a Scotland Yard elite unit.

Greene, a Londoner, disappeared last year from the Costa del Sol, in Spain, where he had been living incognito.

'Medallion man'

Since fleeing Britain several years ago, Greene, who was the leader of the so-called Wembley Mob in the early 70s, has been based in the hills above Marbella.

The Wembley Mob was the country's most successful armed robbery teams in the early 70s, and is reported to have netted 1.3m in four years.

Greene was jailed for 18 years for his part in the 1970 robbery of a bank in north London. The 237,000 seized in the raid was a record at the time.

He has been described by an old friend as "a good old-fashioned London villain".

"He is your original gold medallion man with a taste for the booze and birds," a former acquaintance told the Independent newspaper.

He is also wanted by the Polish, French, Moroccan, Dutch and Irish authorities for different crimes.

A raid by French police on his flat in Paris,found gold bullion, cocaine, but no Greene.

He was sentenced to 17 years in absentia.

A UK Customs spokesman confirmed officers had worked closely with the Spanish authorities leading up to Greene's arrest, and that they would be seeking his extradition.

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