Dutch criminals laundering money in African countries
Dutch criminals are increasingly laundering their illegally earned money in African countries like Uganda and Kenya. They buy gold and diamonds with cash, and then export these raw materials, Bert Langerak, departing director of the Tax Authority's investigative department FIOD, said to newspaper AD.
"Africa is rich in expensive raw materials. That makes it an emerging continent for laundering crime money," Langerak said. "The gold and diamonds are sold all over the world and the proceeds are then used to buy a hotel in Amsterdam, for example. We more and more often see that crime money is laundered through goods."
Cars and agricultural machines and equipment are also increasingly bought and sold for money laundering purposes, Langerak said.
Another popular target for money launderers is agricultural companies in African countries, as cash is still widely used in this industry. "They go with their sports bag full of 500 euro notes to a grower and pay for the potatoes in cash on behalf of the foreign buyer. Those potatoes are exported and sold in another countries. Criminal money is thus mixed with legal trade. Then the proceeds seem to come from fair trade, so clean," Langerak said.