38 million euros defrauded to property developer, eight people arrested in France and Israel

At this stage of the survey, 3.9 million were seized in euros and 700,000 in cryptocurrency.

by Lucie Soullier

“Exchange Banking coordinates against Voyage to Portugal.” It is by this type of announcements published on social networks that are attracted by “banking mules”, as the investigators of the financial brigades call them. Often young adults, who agree to leave the keys to their bank accounts against a little cash or a trip, and are ultimately involved in organized crime cases.

According to information from the world, a sophisticated network of “false president” and money laundering has just been dismantled in an investigation led by the financial junnalco – French jurisdiction specializing in the fight against organized financial crime . Increasingly common scams, but whose amount of the damage is more than 38 million euros here for one of the victims. And whose investigation has rebounded from Portugal to Israel, via Croatia.

The last arrests were conducted in January in Paris, with the help of the Portuguese judicial police and Europol. In total in this case, six people were arrested in the Paris region and two others in Israel, during operations carried out in June 2022 and in January.

very convincing “crooks

How can we be defrauded by 38 million euros without realizing it? “We have the impression that with a few rules of common sense, we cannot be fooled. But we must not believe that we are still at the crook who sends an email full of mistakes, today The crooks are very convincing, “warns Vincent Kozierow, chief of the fraud brigade to the means of payment (BFMP) of the Parisian judicial police, Cosaisie of the investigation with the Reims Research section.

Professional hunts “, adds the divisional commissioner, by unrolling their processes: usurpation of identity and email addresses, sharp knowledge of the structure of the targeted company sometimes even of the boss’s agenda, use of the use of Appropriate professional language, names of good people for good positions, RIB substitution, telephone calls to increase confidence … Barely a method is detected, that it is already renewed.

In this case in this case, a first complaint was filed on December 7, 2021 by a metallurgy company in Haute-Marne. The accountant had been contacted by email by someone identifying himself as his superior. Summoned to make a transfer as part of a confidential share repurchase operation, the accountant complies: 300,000 euros are transferred, before he realizes his error. On December 29, 2021, a Parisian real estate promoter was the victim of the same scam – known as “false president” – for much more important damage. The accountant this time received an email usurping the identity of its director general and asking him to contact a law firm for an important financial operation. Result: forty transfers made, and almost 38 million euros volatilized.

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/Media reports cited above.