Latvia uncovers alleged international plastic granule money laundering scheme

Criminal proceedings have been brought against a group of persons who are accused of attempting to legalize more than seven million euros of illicit funds using several companies and shady transactions, according to the State Revenue Service (VID) on April 9.

The proceedings include a pre-trial investigation of the organized legalization scheme. A string of investigative procedures uncovered several fictitious businesses selling overpriced biopolymer granules to legalize the illicit funds from August 2019 to April 2020. The companies were registered in Latvia, Belarus, Russia and Austria.

Six searches were conducted in the Rīga customs territory, as well as at legal business addresses in the Rīga area and at the homes of those named in the criminal proceedings. The searches uncovered accounting documents and information held in electronic data devices, computers and mobile phones, among other evidence.

520 tonnes of biopolymer granules worth around five million euros have been seized. In the interests of the investigation, no further information will be provided, the tax service said.

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