Northern Ireland man among 13 arrested in UK money laundering raids
Investigators have seized £1.5m in cash and arrested 13 people across the UK - including one in Northern Ireland - in a series of raids against money laundering.
A team of 150 officers from HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) carried out warrants in London, Bedfordshire, Wiltshire, Kent, Co Armagh and Deeside, and arrested 11 men and two women.
They also confiscated four cars worth a total of around £400,000 and secured nine orders to freeze £520,000 in bank accounts.
Fraud investigation director Simon York said: "Money laundering and the organised crime it supports is hugely harmful to businesses, citizens and society as a whole.
"That is why it is a priority for HMRC, and this large-scale operation demonstrates we will not hesitate to investigate those suspected of being involved.
"We are determined to cut off the funds that are the lifeblood of serious crime in the UK. In the last year alone, HMRC has recovered more than £192m of illicit proceeds using its civil and criminal proceeds of crime powers."
The 13 arrested in the raids on June 26 have all been released under investigation. They are:
- In Bedfordshire, a 37-year-old man and a 31-year-old woman from two addresses in Bedford, a 54-year-old man from Flitwick, and a 20-year-old woman from Dunstable.
- In London, a 47-year-old man from north Finchley, a 54-year-old man from Southgate, a 51-year-old man from Queens Park and a 42-year-old man from Hackney.
- In Kent, a 34-year-old man from Beckenham and a 35-year-old man from Ashford.
- The remaining three are a 27-year-old man from Swindon, Wiltshire; a 47-year-old man from Shotton, Deeside; and a 38-year-old man from Co Armagh.
Last week, HMRC also carried out action with the Metropolitan Police targeting money service bureaus in the capital suspected of laundering criminal cash.