Four men accused of running a human trafficking ring to transport “captured” Algerian nationals from Ceuta to mainland Spain on fast launches were arrested on Saturday.
The men allegedly charged the individuals €2,000 to make the journey from Ceuta to Algeciras.
The Policía Nacional claimed the men made up to €26,000 on each trip.
Out of the four arrested, two of the men from El Príncipe neighbourhood are said to have an extensive history of crime.
The investigation commenced five months ago when the Policía Nacional noticed boats carrying Algerian men from the Spanish enclave to Algeciras.
The Spanish authorities suspected a criminal organisation responsible for “capturing” these men from a temporary migrant facility in Ceuta.
They then learnt the gang roped the Algerian men in by letting them stay in their homes until it was time to set sail towards the peninsula on inflatable boats.
A spokesman for the Policía Nacional said: “The economic benefits from this illicit activity were so beneficial, the gang preferred this to transporting drugs.”
More than €10,000, two knives, various mobile phones, a video camera and various documents were also seized as the investigation continues.