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A man believed to be involved in arranging multi-tonne cocaine importations from South America to Europe has been extradited to Germany to face trial.

NCA and police jacketsKamran Butt, 44, was tracked down and arrested by the National Crime Agency on 16 June this year, on behalf of the Bundeskriminalamt (Federal Police) in Germany.

Butt, who was living at a property in Woolwich, South East London was subject to a European Arrest Warrant (EAW) issued by a judge in Hamburg on 22 October 2020.

He is suspected of having a significant role in an Albanian and German organised crime group, using encrypted comms platform EncroChat to arrange cocaine shipments.

Investigators believe the group had contacts in South America and across Europe, and facilitated the movement of class A drugs over several years.

Butt’s extradition was confirmed by Westminster Magistrates’ Court on 8 November 2021 after he withdrew an appeal against it. He was returned to Germany on Tuesday (16 November) where he is now remanded in custody awaiting trial.

Deputy Director Andrea Wilson, from the National Crime Agency, said:

“NCA officers both in the UK and overseas have worked closely with our German counterparts throughout this investigation.

“Kamran Butt went to great lengths to avoid the attention of law enforcement in Germany and the UK, and is believed to have been using EncroChat to communicate with other members of the crime group.

“We are determined to do all we can to tackle criminal drugs smuggling networks impacting on the UK, no matter where they are, and this case is a great example of collaborative work between the NCA and our colleagues in the BKA.”

18 November 2021