Thursday, 10 March 2016 - 09:47
Coffeeshop management held in €20 million money laundering scheme
The police arrested two men in Tilburg in a large investigation into a criminal organization, the Public Prosecutor announced. The men are suspected of laundering 20 million euros through four coffee shops they managed in Tilburg and Den Bosch. The suspects are a 55 year old man from Tilburg and a 58 year old man who is registered in Luxembourg but lives in Tilburg. A third suspect, the 58 year old's brother, is currently imprisoned in Thailand in an investigation there. The Prosecutor did not say whether the Dutch investigation and the Thai investigation are connected. The three suspects are believed to be the leaders of the organization. The two brothers managed four coffee shops and other businesses through an illegal construct. The illegal proceeds from the businesses were invested in various countries in Asia and Europe. The Prosecutor believes they used "straw men" to hide their income. According to Omroep Brabant, the two men form the management of coffeeshop chain The Grass Company. The founder of this chain, Johan van Laarhoven, is currently imprisoned in Thailand, where he was recently sentenced to 103 years in prison for money laundering and earning money from selling soft drugs in the Netherlands.