Two different operations by the Europol has successfully dismantled two illicit print shops alleged for producing counterfeit currencies such as the high-quality Romanian lei and the other one for Euros. The dismantle occurred in June 2020 when Europol supported both the operations. The counterfeiters for Euro belonging from Spain had been targeted by the Columbian Technical Investigation Unit (Cuerpo Técnico de Investigación) and Spanish Police (Policia National). At the same time, the Romanian cops (Poliția Română) successfully took down one of the considerable polymer banknotes counterfeiters.
Counterfeit Notes Banned in Spain
An action day in Spain that is on the 17th of June 2020 has led to the arrests of the leading suspect duos. While conducting the house searches, the law enforcement officers had found a noteworthy amount of raw materials and types of equipment. The seizure points out that the illicit printing shop had the initial capacity to print around 300,000 counterfeit currencies like Euro banknotes. The law enforcement officials had discovered and seized the samples of €20 and €50. The investigation has uncovered that the suspect duo, the Columbian nationals (known by the Columbian authorities for identical activities), have shifted to Spain in the bid to set up a brand new production line of Euro counterfeit currencies.
Europol had supported the cooperation between the Spanish and the Columbian authorities. It has facilitated the early monitoring of the criminal activity and as well as the prohibition of a significant amount of Euro counterfeit currencies. These currencies were potentially penetrating the European economy. Additional to the Europol’s analytical and financial support throughout the investigation, A Europol expert has been deployed to Spain in the action day in the bid to support the activities in the field.
Highest-Quality Counterfeit Currencies Producing Print Shop Held in Romania
On the 24th of June, 2020, the Romanian cops had searched five of the houses and captured three suspects owing to interrogation. The main suspect’s home has yielded the investigators with an illicit print shop. The seizures made by the investigators included UV-inkjet printer and cutting devices (machinery), various tools for producing counterfeit currencies, unfinished counterfeit banknotes, approximately 400 pieces of 100 Leu fake euros for a total value of about €8,000 and raw materials for further production.
The counterfeit money was produced on a polymer material and had included all the security features that are easily detectable by the public. This makes the identification of the fake notes almost impossible for the people without expertise. The beginning of the production dates back to the year 2014 when the first high-quality banknotes emerged in circulation in Romania. Since the start, 17,065 counterfeit currencies have been detected that caused financial havoc of around €352,500. A Europol expert had supported the Romanian authorities while the raid was going on, and the houses were being searched. He furnished them with specialized expertise in the counterfeiting of currency on the spot.
Counterfeiting of currency has been included under the new European Financial and Economic Crime Centre that has been recently created at Europol. Europol, being an EU Central Office for combating euro counterfeiting, offers all the possible support to the EU Member States and its other cooperating partners in the bid to achieve the most efficient law enforcement in the field of protection against the Euro counterfeiting.
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