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Massive police effort leads to steroid busts across Europe

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A massive law-enforcement bust across Europe has resulted in the seizure of 24 tons of raw steroid powder and the closure of nine underground labs that produced performance-enhancing drugs and other illegal substances.

Europol said Monday that the operation, which included 33 countries and was led by national police forces in Italy and Greece, was the largest of its kind and led to the arrest of 234 people and the dismantling of 17 organized-crime groups.

The World Anti-Doping Agency also participated in the sting, which discovered a trafficking system in which non-professional athletes used rechargeable credit cards and cryptocurrencies to buy small amounts of illegal substances, much of which was moved through gyms and unregulated online pharmacies.

Officials said they carried out a combined 1,357 urine and blood tests at sports events as part of the operation, though no details were shared about which events or who was tested.

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