Germany: Documents from ministries seized by prosecutor’s office as part of money laundering investigation
In the confiscation of documents by the Ministries of Finance and Justice in the context of an investigation into possible obstruction of justice by a government agency, responsible for investigating money laundering cases, prosecutors Germany. The German Ministry of Finance stated that it supports the investigation of the prosecutors, noting that the suspicions are not directed against the employees of the ministry after the raid on his offices.
Prosecutors said in a statement that they have been investigating the Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) since 2020 because the agency had not forwarded reports made by banks about a possible Money laundering, to the police and the judiciary.
The investigation was triggered by a bank report to the FIU for suspicious payments in Africa amounting to more than one million euros, which according to the bank may have been linked to arms and drug smuggling and terrorist financing.
The FIU noted the report, but did not forward it to law enforcement.
Prosecutors said they were also considering the fact that since the FIU took control of money laundering in 2017, reports of suspicious activity have dropped dramatically.
In fact, as reported, previous investigations at the FIU had revealed that there was extensive communication with the ministries investigated today.
The prosecutorsAccording to the Athens News Agency, citing German media, they want to determine to what extent ministry officials were involved in the FIU decisions.
The FIU is part of the Federal Customs Administration, which reports to the Ministry of Finance.
The German Ministry of Finance issued a statement stating that it supports the investigation of the prosecutors in the FIU, noting that the suspicions are not directed against the employees of the ministry.
“The Ministry of Finance, of course, fully supports the principles,” the statement said. “The underlying suspicions are not directed directly against Finance Ministry officials,” they added.