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New actions against #Encrochat & Sky ECC users in the ‘Ndrangheta organization in Italy and Germany
In a new major operation against international drug trafficking and money laundering, Eurojust and Europol have supported the competent Italian and German authorities with the arrest of 31 suspects in both countries, alleged to be part of the ‘Ndrangheta mafia, operating in different regions of Italy and abroad.
Further to this, in the context of a joint investigation team (JIT) between Italy and Germany, 65 other suspects have been identified and their places were searched during a large-scale action, for which around 800 police officers and tax officials were deployed today in both countries.
During a period of at least several years, the OCG is suspected of having organised the trade in cocaine between Italy, the Netherlands, Germany and Spain using encrypted EncroChat and Sky ECC communication tools.
A string of building and hospitality companies was allegedly used to launder the proceedings in Italy. The investigations in Germany focus in particular on drug trafficking and potential tax avoidance. For this purpose, financial and economic specialists of the German police joined the JIT.
In total at least several hundreds of thousands EUR have been seized, as well as weapons, cocaine, two luxury vehicles and jewelry. Furthermore, a full assessment of cash amounts seized is ongoing and bank accounts have been frozen.
This investigation is part of the Italian DIA Project ONNET, an EU-financed initiative to tackle mafia-type organised crime groups active in Europe. The project was launched at Europol’s headquarters and targets the mafia-style criminal groups in their entirety, rather than one or more of their specific criminal activities.
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