He was head of the Civil Guard’s Rapid Action Group, which has become heavily involved in recent years in the fight against radical Islamic terrorism. Members of the special forces unit, which has also undertaken international missions in places like Kosovo and Haiti, arrested British fugitive Daniel Dobbs in January at his hideaway in Malaga.
The 32-year-old had gone missing from a South Yorkshire prison in November 2018 after being sentenced to 13-and-a-half years in jail in January 2014 for trafficking heroin and amphetamines.
He was held during a dawn raid linked to an operation against an illegal subterranean Costa del Sol cigarette factory he was suspected of running with another Brit.
Mr Gayoso, who had no known underlying health issues, had joined the unit he headed nearly 25 years ago.
The married dad-of-two started to feel unwell on March 8 and thought he had common flu. He is said to have been sent home after going to hospital four days later before being admitted to San Pedro Hospital in Logrono on March 17 in a serious condition.
He became the fourth Civil Guard to die of Covid-19. Nearly 800 Spanish police officers have died after testing positive for the virus.
The Civil Guard said in a tweet: “We regretfully confirm the death of Jesus, head of the force’s Rapid Action Group, victim of Covid-19.
“Our hearts are with his relatives, friends and colleagues. Rest in peace brother. We will never forget your example.”
Civil Guards were joined last night by National Police officers and emergency services workers in an emotional tribute outside the force’s HQ in Logrono.
After a round of applause they sang a hymn used to honour Armed Forces members who lose their lives in service. The Christian song translates in English as ‘Death Is Not The End.”
Members of Mr Gayoso’s unit were involved in making sure coronavirus sufferers in a northern Spanish town which was one of the first to be hit by a mass outbreak earlier this month, obeyed quarantine orders.
More than 30 people tested positive for the virus in Haro, which has a population of just over 12,000, after attending a gypsy funeral in the Basque capital Vitoria.
Police sources said he started to display the tell-tale symptoms of coronavirus before his officers were sent to Haro in hazmat suits. He is believed to have caught it during a work trip to Belgium at the start of the month.
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