Wednesday 26 February 2020

Officials seize €262m in criminal assets, out-of-court settlements generate most

Confiscated designer handbags were auctioned. Photo: OM.nl

Justice ministry officials confiscated cash and goods worth nearly €262m from convicted criminals and crime suspects last year, a rise of €90m on 2018, the public prosecution department said on Tuesday.

Most of the 2019 earnings came from a €183m out-of-court settlement with telecoms company Telia, which was involved in a large corruption case. Out-of-court settlements accounted for the bulk of the proceeds in previous years as well.

The total amount of criminal assets in the hands of the authorities is larger than the €262m total, spokeswoman Janneke de Smet-Dierckx said.

‘Last year, hundreds of millions of euros also went to the tax office or to victims and these sums are not included,’ she said. Nor does the total include the value of drugs which have been seized by the police.

As well as cash, public prosecution department officials seize cars, boats, houses and even designer handbags during their investigations.

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