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The Hague, 19 June 2015
Two men and one woman were arrested on Tuesday in the Netherlands as a result of an international joint action supported by Eurojust and Europol, and led by Dutch law enforcement authorities. Thirty-nine searches were carried out in the Netherlands, Belgium, Germany, Switzerland, Hungary and the Czech Republic. Spain and the UK also cooperated in the investigation. A speedboat, cash, firearms, drugs, chemicals and equipment used to produce drugs, digital information and documents were seized.
Tuesday’s operation marks the conclusion of a major investigation initiated in 2014 by the Dutch authorities and supported by Eurojust and Europol. The objective of the investigation was to trace and recover the assets (e.g. bank accounts, property, cars, motorcycles, boats, jewellery and artworks) of a criminal who owed the Dutch authorities EUR 13.5 million from the proceeds of crime: EUR 10.5 million based on the benefits obtained from the illegal activities for which he had been convicted, and EUR 3 million levied by the Dutch tax authorities. In 2004, the individual was convicted of leading an organised crime group specialised in producing and trafficking synthetic drugs.
Eurojust held one coordination meeting, enabled links between public prosecutors in the concerned countries to be strengthened, and coordinated the issuance of letters of request. Europol provided assistance throughout the investigation and supported Tuesday’s action by deploying several mobile offices in the countries in which the house searches took place.