Friday, 15 May 2015
Friday, 1 May 2015
It is hats off to the Costa del Sol’s business tourism industry after the annual assembly of the Iberian Chapter of the International Congress and Convention Association (ICCA), which took place on the Algarve (Portugal) from 15-18 April.
The joint work of the Costa del Sol Convention Bureau, Marbella Town Council and the Marbella Convention Centre, in addition to the collaboration of Malaga City Council, has led to Marbella being chosen as the venue for the 2016 edition of this prestigious event.
Along these line, Elias Bendodo, president of the Costa del Sol Tourist Office, has welcomed the choice of venue for the event, which will be attended by some 80 representatives of tourist destinations, convention centres, hotels, PCOs and specialized media, since it represents a step more towards the consolidation of the Costa del Sol’s position as an international business tourism and congress destination.
Although there is no exact date yet, Bendodo stated that the event will probably be held sometime in the spring of 2016, with Marbella hosting the 59 members that ICCA currently has in Spain and Portugal (in addition to specially invited guests).
Workshop and fam trip
Scheduled to be held at the Marbella Convention Centre, ICCA Iberian Chapter’s annual assembly will include a workshop geared to clients from different destinations, as well as keynotes on burning issues affecting the business tourism industry. After the event, there will also be a fam trip allowing the participants to get to know firsthand the Costa del Sol’s strengths as a business tourism destination and the province’s main attractions.
A 1,000 members
Founded in 1963 by a group of travel agents, ICCA currently has 1,000 members, including companies and institutions in 90 countries all over the world.
BRITISH model and Marbella resident Rosie Mac worked as a stand-in and double for Emilia Clark in season five of the popular TV Series Game of Thrones.
The young model and actress was chosen by Game of Thrones producers, who filmed part of the season in Sevilla, and according tocomicbookmovie.com are so pleased with her they are even considering creating a role of her own in the series.
Monday, 8 September 2014
Gerard Kavanagh was shot dead in a bar on the Costa del Sol Notorious gangster Gerard “Hatchet” Kavanagh was gunned down by two masked assassins yesterday as he relaxed in a Spanish pub.
The 44-year-old was riddled with up to nine bullets by the hitmen, who burst into the Costa del Sol bar in Elviria, near Marbella, just before 4pm Irish time on Saturday. A source said: “The shooting had all the hallmarks of a professional hit.” Terrified gangster Kavanagh tried to flee after spotting the assassins coming through the door of Harmons Irish Bar in Elviria, a 20-minute drive east of Marbella. But it was too late for the doomed crime boss, who fell to the ground in a hail of bullets surrounded by a pool of his own blood. A burnt-out BMW X3 was discovered nearby shortly after the shooting, which happened in broad daylight around 4pm Irish time. Spanish police were last night carrying out a forensic search of the vehicle to see if it was used as the getaway car. A source said: “The gunmen were wearing balaclavas and were dressed from head to toe in black. “The shooting had all the hallmarks of a professional hit. It looks like they picked a time when they knew the bar wasn’t going to be busy. “It is believed the victim was trying to flee when he was shot because many of the nine bullets he took hit him in the back.”
Notorious Irish gangster Gerard 'Hatchet' Kavanagh shot dead in Costa del Sol bar A police spokesman said: “A fatal shooting has occurred near to Marbella. We are investigating.” Witnesses to the shooting told last night how the gunmen shot their victim in the back as he talked with a mystery woman – and finished the job off as he tried to run for his life. One said: “He was sat on a chair in a pair of green swimshorts talking to a woman I’d never seen before. “The men rushed up to him from behind and shot him two or three times in the back and, as he tried to run for the safety of the bar, finished the job off with a shot to the back of the head. “They turned him over to see if he was dead before fleeing. It was absolutely horrific. “The police took the dead man’s black Audi away and undertakers removed his body around 8pm.” Another said: “The killers left the engine on their getaway car running. “I’ve been told it was found burnt out at a supermarket just down the road.” A pal, who asked not to be named, said: “The dead man was lying face down just inside the door of the bar when I saw him. “He was dressed in just a pair of shorts and there was a lot of blood.” Harmons bar is sandwiched between two restaurants in a pretty, tree-lined square just off the N340 dual carriageway running along the Costa del Sol, which was once dubbed the Road of Death because of the number of accidents along it. The bar was closed last night after the horror shooting. A woman who answered a side door said: “Sorry we’ve got nothing to say. We’re not going to speak.” The owner of a neighbouring bar said: “I don’t want to say anything. This is very bad for business.” Kavanagh’s body was taken to the Costa del Sol State Hospital for X-rays last night to determine exactly how many bullets were in his body. Kavanagh, from Ben Bulben Road in Drimnagh, West Dublin, was a senior member of the notorious Kinahan gang, controlled by godfather Christy Kinahan, who is based on the Costa del Sol.
The gang is involved in drug debt collection, drug dealing on an international scale and is suspected of ordering several executions in Crumlin-Drimnagh feud. Kavanagh was jailed for four years in 1996 when he was just 25 for dealing heroin in the Crumlin area. Back then his defence had argued that Kavanagh was only before the court as he had developed a drugs habit forcing him to work as a courier for gangs. The Dublin Circuit Criminal Court was told that he was involved in a chain of drug distribution headed by drug barons. Following his sentence, Kavanagh paired up with Tallaght gangster Paul Rice, who was jailed for 10 years in July 1995 after pleading guilty to the robbery of a bank in which shots were fired. Together they rose to the top of the drug ladder before Kavanagh packed up and moved to Spain where he was reported to be supplying most of Tallaght and a large area of Drimnagh with illegal drugs. He has been living in Benalmadena for almost a decade with his wife and two children where his daughter is a star of the show-jumping circuit and his son is a professional boxer. Security sources say that the shooting has now raised fears for the safety of the Kinahans.
The scene of the shooting is near to the luxury Don Carlos Hotel, which this weekend is hosting the 19th US-Spain forum. The Spanish ambassador to the USA and the American ambassador to Spain were among guests who opened the three-day event and security had been stepped up significantly in the area. Kavanagh was jailed for four years in March 1996 after he was caught with €3,500 worth of heroin and cannabis. In court, Detective Eamonn Maloney said that Kavanagh was “a major figure in drug supplies in the Crumlin, Drimnagh and Dolphin’s Barn areas of Dublin for some time”. He was forced to flee Ireland after he was targeted by anti-drug vigilantes and the Crininal Assets Bureau.
Sunday, 7 September 2014
Irish man shot dead in Spain was a well-known criminal who closely associated with some of the biggest drug dealers in Ireland and who gardaí believe was the intended target of a botched murder bid last month. The dead man, in his 40s and from Dublin, was singled out in a bar on the Costa del Sol on Saturday afternoon by two masked gunmen who fired at least nine shots, most of which are believed to have hit the victim.
The victim tried to run to safety when he saw the gunmen coming for him but collapsed on the premises when wounded. He was unresponsive when the emergency services later arrived at the scene. He was taken by ambulance to hospital but was pronounced dead shortly after arriving. The murder occurred just before 5.30pm local time at an Irish bar in Elivira, on the outskirts of Marbella. A BMW the gunmen are believed to have been driven to and from the scene in was later found burnt out by Spanish police.
Sunday, 31 August 2014
A man identified as Amsterdam crime boss Samir B. was murdered in Benahavis, Marbella in Spain on Wednesday. image: inmo-andalucia.com The 36-year-old, also known as “Scarface,” was killed in the Spanish town near Marbella on Wednesday afternoon, Het Parool reports.
News reports speak of a gangland execution. Samir B. was in the Monte Halcones mall in the picturesque mountain village around 2.00pm when he was shot multiple times in his back and head by two assailants. He was apparently shot on his way out of a storefront in the shopping center. Witnesses called the authorities, but the emergency services could do nothing to resuscitate him.
The Dutch-Moroccan victim from near Sloterdijk in Amsterdam West has been named in connection with sizeable drug deals. Crimesite.nl writes that he was the largest drug dealer in the city, and he actually marked his cocaine blocks with his own stamp. B. had relocated to Spain a few years back, but apparently his hold on the Amsterdam underground remained. Het Parool writes that B. had a long career in the underworld of Amsterdam West. He grew to be one of the biggest crime bosses in the city. In June 2010 he was arrested there and extradited to the Netherlands, in connection with the death of 12-year-old Danny Gubbels in Breda; the boy died when someone opened fire on his parent’s trailer and B. was named. He was released after only a few days in prison here, for lack of evidence. His execution in Benahavis is being investigated by the local police, as well as the Spanish military police force, Guardia Civil, and national police agents. Earlier this month, another of Amsterdam’s criminal leaders, Derkiaoui van der Meijden, was also killed in Amsterdam Oost.
Monday, 25 August 2014
240 kilos of cocaine have been found in the hull of a yacht in Huelva Agents from the National Police, in collaboration with the United States DEA, have arrested six people; four in the province of Huelva and two in Madrid in the three searches carried out as part of the same operation. The investigation started at the beginning of April, when large amounts of cocaine has been arriving in Europe by sea, carried out by an international organisation. Further investigations revealed the head of the organisation is a Spaniard, who lives in Colombia, and who had returned to Spain recently, presumably, to coordinate a consignment of the drug. The rest of the organisation are all Colombian, and had the job of providing logistic support on land for the reception and extraction of the drug.
MATTHEW MACKLIN, the Marbella based boxer, whose proposed fight against Argentine fighter, Jorge Sebastien Heiland in a WBC eliminator on August 30 was postponed after his trainer, Jamie Moore, was shot in Marbella, is set for a swift ring return. His opponent is as yet unnamed, however, Macklin is expected to undertake his 36th professional bout next month on September 27, on the Felix Sturm - Paul Smith WBA middleweight ‘Super’ title fight undercard in Kiel, Germany. If as expected Macklin wins, the three-time world title challenger expects to be returning to Dublin for the Heiland fight on November 15. Macklin, hopes the Heiland fight will bring him a fourth shot at a world title, as promoter Eddie Hearn looks to guide him to the big title that has eluded him so far.
An Irish teenager is in custody on an attempted murder charge after a violent street fight on the Costa del Sol. The 17-year-old was part of a group of four Irish holidaymakers who got into a row over a girl during a night out in the upmarket resort of Puerto Banus near Marbella. His brother allegedly punched a friend unconscious before the teenager kicked him in the head as he lay on the ground. The victim was rushed to the nearby Costa del Sol Hospital before being transferred to a specialist centre in Malaga so he could be treated for “life-threatening” head injuries.
Doctors have told police he cheated death because of the rapid medical attention he received. The altercation happened around 3am on August 14 in a street a short walk from Puerto Banus port named after singer Julio Iglesias, who owns a house in mountains a short drive away. Investigators say they believe the four men, who had been out drinking together, rowed over a girl. Local police made the arrests at the scene after witnessing the assault from a distance. The injured man, who like the other three Irish holidaymakers involved has not been named, is now being treated in a normal ward after spending several days in an induced coma in intensive care. Police from a specialist anti-violence unit based in Malaga have led the investigation.
A youth court judge remanded the teenager to a young offenders’ institution after quizzing him in a closed court session. His brother, whose age is not known, has been released on bail but is thought to have had his passport taken away from him so he cannot leave Spain. A trial date has yet to be set. The Irish teenager is expected to be held for custody for several months before he is released ahead of trial. A source close to the case said: “The judge quizzed him on an attempted murder charge because medical experts who examined his alleged victim concluded the consequences of the assault could have been much more serious if he hadn’t received rapid medical attention.”
Friday, 22 August 2014
Spain’s changing climate and economy fuels wildfire risks.Climate change is gradually turning Spain into a fire zone – and a change in the economic climate is inflaming the situation.
The combined forces of climate, economic and social change are leaving Spain increasingly exposed to the damaging and costly effects of wildfires.
Vanesa Moreno, a researcher in the geography department at the University of Alcalá in Madrid, and colleagues studied the pattern of fires in Spain from 1968 to 2010.
Although Spain, like much of southern Europe, is expected to become more arid with global warming, and although some Mediterranean vegetation is adapted to − and even benefits from − natural fire outbreaks, the picture is not a simple one.
In the moister Atlantic north-west of the country, there are two fire seasons − at the end of winter, and in the summer. In the Mediterranean region, fires are more frequent in the long, hot summer.
Monday, 18 August 2014
A fire has broken out in Benahavis, near Marbella. This photo was taken on the road between Estepona and San Pedro. The cause of the fire is still not yet known, but follows in the wake of a serious fire in Los Montes de Malaga exactly a week ago. The fire in Los Montes devestated 260 hectares of natural park. So far this year there have been 20 such fires in Malaga Province, which experts say is within the average range of annual fires.
Heavily armed men have attacked a convoy of cars belonging to a Saudi prince, stealing 250,000 euros (£200,000; $330,000), police say. The convoy was heading through northern Paris on its way to Le Bourget airport late on Sunday evening when it was raided, reports say. The gunmen seized a vehicle carrying the money and documents, later releasing the driver and two others. The convoy was said to have come from the Saudi embassy. No-one was hurt. The gunmen, reportedly armed with Kalashnikov rifles, targeted a Mercedes mini-van at 21:15 (19:15 GMT) on the northern ring road, or peripherique, at Porte de la Chapelle, on the edge of Paris.
The motorcade, belonging to a Saudi prince, was targeted by eight people in two separate vehicles who pointed their guns at the driver of the Mercedes, forcing him to stop, French media reported.
The men then drove the vehicle away with the driver and the two other Saudis inside. No shots were fired but the Saudis were later freed and the vehicle eventually found burned out.
"In the vehicle there was roughly 250,000 euros in cash and official documents from the embassy," police union spokesman Rocco Contento told BFM TV news.
Immigrants who are waiting in Tangiers to cross into Spain have been attacked and their homes ambushed. The NGO’s at the scene fear the aggression against the Sub-Saharans will force them to try to cross the Strait to escape whatever the weather conditions.
The problem started on Friday near the Tangiers airport. The Sub-Saharan’s were told a bus was going to Spain and some 20 women and their children took up the offer. But the bus took them to a local dance festival of African culture called Twiza which was being held in Tangiers for some days. When they realised they had been fooled they returned home, and met a group of Moroccan men armed with machetes and sticks who started to hit them.
Five of the women suffered stab wounds and others suffered abuse. Spanish volunteer, Helena Maleno, was among them and believes the violence is being organised by criminal groups. She was sexually molested by one of the men. She said the Moroccans speech was always the same, ‘We want to clear up here, go to Spain’. Last year an immigrant died when he fell off a wall during a police raid, bringing charges of murderers against the police amid violent scenes as you can seen in the video below.
Sunday, 17 August 2014
An ebola alert has been activated in Alicante, Spain, after a young Nigerian man was admitted to hospital with fever and vomiting. Spanish health authorities activated alert protocols after the man showed "several symptoms" of the disease.
The alert comes a week after a Spanish priest who contracted ebola while working in Liberia died in hospital in Madrid. The man was taken ill in the eastern city of Alicante Father Miguel Pajares was the first European infected by a strain of the virus that has killed more than 1,000 people in West Africa.
He was airlifted from Liberia to Spain on August 7 after becoming infected while working for a non-governmental organisation there. The 75-year-old was flown to Europe for treatment with his co-worker Juliana Bohi, a nun who has since tested negative for the disease. Elsewhere, 17 ebola sufferers have fled a Liberian clinic raided by looters who stole blood-stained sheets - sparking fears the virus will spread.
Saturday, 16 August 2014
MOROCCAN anti-terror services working in collaboration with Spanish police officers have broken up a jihadist terror cell in Morocco. In total nine members of the cell, reported to be linked to the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS), were detained on Thursday in the three Moroccan cities of Fes, Tetouan and Fnideq. The terrorists were working to recruit new members to the cell with the objective of sending them off to fight in the conflicts currently underway in Syria and Iraq.
It is believed that some of the group made frequent visits to the Spanish city of Ceuta, located on the north coast of Morocco, with the intention of converting people to their cause and raising financial aid. The Spanish Interior Minister has linked those arrested with ISIS, and confirmed that they had received training in the use of weapons and the manufacture of explosives with the goal of participating in suicide attacks or travelling to conflict zones in the Middle-East.
It has also come to light that there were plans to carry out a terror attack on Moroccan soil. Computers and other data-storage devices used by the jihadists are currently being examined for evidence of concrete plans. The investigation remains open within the three cities, with police from both nationalities continuing to work together. Government sources commented that the operation reflects on the excellent relationship that exists between Spain and Morocco when combating terror in the region.
THE Guardia Civil have arrested two people under suspicion of stealing suitcases from distracted airport passengers. Within the Guardia Civil brief of the Safer Tourism Plan which has been put in place to prevent theft from tourists visiting Malaga, the officers at the airport have caught two people who were taking national flights with only hand baggage and then taking advantage of distracted tourists arriving at the baggage carousels to steal their luggage while they were looking away. On several occasions they also, allegedly, pick-pocketed passengers as well as taking their hand baggage while they were retrieving their check in luggage. Investigating officers calculate that they have stolen around €21,000 worth of luggage and wallets.
FORMER boxing champion Jamie Moore, who was shot in Marbella, is to be released from hospital today. The 35-year-old, from Walkden, was shot in the leg and hip while in the Spanish town, where he was training Birmingham middleweight Matthew Macklin. Mr Moore, a former European light-middleweight champion, did not suffer permanent damage in the attack and was transferred to his local hospital at Salford Royal.
Tweeting about his release from hospital, Mr Moore said: “Being discharged from hospital today, still a way to go before I’m back 100 per cent but I’m making quick progress.” He added: “Big thanks to the doctors and nurses at Salford Royal who’ve looked after me over the last four days, they’ve been absolutely brilliant.”