Suspected money laundering: major raid in North Rhine-Westphalia

Status: 10/27/2021 2:07 p.m.

The State Criminal Police Office of North Rhine-Westphalia and the Essen customs investigation office searched a total of 40 objects in North Rhine-Westphalia on Wednesday. The major raid is about suspicion of money laundering in particularly serious cases.

The State Criminal Police Office of North Rhine-Westphalia and the Customs Investigation Office Essen investigate on behalf of the public prosecutor’s office Cologne against 46 accused. According to the public prosecutor’s office, two suspects were arrested in Duisburg and one in Düsseldorf. The accused are to be brought before the judge at the Cologne District Court on Wednesday.

250 officers in action

Together with officers from the police headquarters Düsseldorf and the Mettmann district police authority, 40 residential and business premises and warehouses have been searched since Wednesday morning, including in Cologne, Düsseldorf, Wuppertal, Dortmund and Essen.

Money laundering raid: searches in NRW

Photo: WDR / Piet Keusen

A total of around 250 officials are on duty to secure evidence in proceedings against the accused – Europol is also involved in the investigation. Because individual suspects are considered dangerous, special forces were deployed on three objects, the investigators say.

Investigations have been going on for around a year

According to their own statements, the public prosecutor and the police are investigating a group that has allegedly transported cash to Turkey by air and land since 2019. The cash is said to have been accepted, counted, packed and distributed to the couriers in warehouses in Bochum and Ratingen. According to initial investigations, it comes from criminal offenses.

As the investigators announced at noon, a total of 6,764,575 euros were seized from the couriers in the run-up to the raid. During the searches, the emergency services have so far been able to secure data carriers, cell phones and written documents.


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