Saturday, May 22, 2010

Alleged carbon fraudsters nabbed

Dodgy multi-billion dollar money-making schemes aren't confined to America's free market Wall Street types:

In the early hours of Friday morning, UK tax authorities raided a series of homes and businesses nabbing four men that are believed to be part of an organised criminal gang suspected of ETS carbon trade fraud worth £38 million (€44m).

Large piles of cash and a stash of weapons were uncovered when investigators entered seven properties in the London and Leicester areas.

The arrests, of individuals between the ages of 29 and 53, are linked to raids that took place in August last year where nine people were arrested. The operation was part of "a complex, 15-month investigation," according to Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs.

However, the development is unrelated to the 25 arrests made earlier this month in the UK and Germany when authorities engaged in a blitz of raids on hundreds of sites in the two countries, including on Deutsche Bank and energy firm RWE, in a case involving the theft of an estimated €180 miillion from state revenues.

Europe's criminal intelligence agency, Europol, estimates the carbon trading fraud to amount to €5 billion.



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