Four arrest warrants were issued this morning against two Germans, one Jordanian and one Polish national between the ages of 30 and 52. 18 search warrants in Berlin, Brandenburg and Lower Saxony against 16 other suspects were issued as well. As a result of the house searches, various pieces of evidence were confiscated, among which eight cars, a motorcycle, various data carriers, specialised tools for breaking into vehicles as well as cash and drugs. The operation involved around 250 police officers and was supported by Europol.
An international operation successfully dismantled an organised crime group, suspect of money laundering and illegally trading gold. Italy's Guardia di Finanza (Bologna) led the operation. The Guardia di Finanza handles all areas of financial crime. Europol supported the case with codename Pietra Filosofale. House searches were carried out on 12 December in the Italian regions of Abruzzo, Basilicata, Emilia-Romagna and Tuscany.
All over Europe, law enforcement agencies performed actions against suspects who bought counterfeit euro banknotes on illegal platforms on the Darknet. These actions, coordinated by Europol, started on 19 November and the majority of interventions took place from 3 to 6 December
On 6 and 7 December, 125 delegates from EU Member States, third parties and 11 international organisations gathered at Europol’s headquarters for the second annual conference of ‘Drugs in Europe: a bold law enforcement response’. The delegates discussed the latest trends in illicit drug trafficking and agreed on bold law enforcement responses to protect the public from the threats posed by illicit drugs.
Illegal fireworks are a huge Europe-wide problem. Their unregulated distribution causes considerable safety risks to those shipping and buying them due to their substantial explosive character, as well as millions of euro in tax losses for some economies.
The irregular migrants were smuggled from Vietnam via South America and finally into the EU in groups of 6 to 12 individuals. Each group was led by an English-speaking smuggler who travelled with them from the beginning and facilitated the communication during the journey. The network received EUR 18 000 from each migrant, which could be paid using several payment methods: either they paid the amount in their home country, gave up their land and property, or they paid in kind once in Europe through unpaid work. It is estimated that the criminal network gained over EUR 13 million.
Two suspects of more than 20 high-profile burglaries in Germany were arrested on 5 December 2018 in Moldova. The arrests are the result of a successful international criminal investigation by the German and Moldovan authorities, supported by Europol. The burglars made their way into the victims’ houses through the roof, causing more than EUR 20 million worth of damage.
Unique joint investigation by judiciary and police forces in the Netherlands, Italy, Germany and Belgium culminates in the largest, coordinated joint action against an organised criminal group to date in Europe.
168 arrested, 1504 money mules and 140 money mule organisers identified, as a result of the fourth European Money Mule Action ‘EMMA 4’, a global law enforcement action week tackling the issue of money muling. The action took place over the course of three months (September-November 2018). 30 States took part in EMMA 4, alongside Europol, Eurojust, the European Banking Federation, supported by more than 300 banks. The joint money muling campaign #DontBeAMule kicks off today to alert the public to this crime.
The Commissioner General of the National Police Agency of Japan (NPA), Shunichi Kuryu, and Europol’s Executive Director, Catherine De Bolle, today signed a Working Arrangement to initiate cooperation between Europol and Japan to combat international cross-border crime.