The Civil Guard of Spain has recently taken down a criminal group utilizing gambling to launder money.
In a recent report published by the law enforcement agency, the Civil Guard announced that it has arrested three people in connection with the case and is currently investigating a further eight individuals in the Spanish provinces of Alicante and Biscay. The report detailed that the group utilized stolen identities and virtual payment cards to launder their money through a variety of gambling businesses situated in Malta and Gibraltar.
The investigation into this group was initiated close to half a decade ago in 2019 when the Spanish authorities detected a variety of suspicious transactions made by up to a dozen individuals. The Civil Guard also discovered that this group moved up to 2.5 million euros throughout the year with over 2 thousand separate cards.
Moreover, the authorities discovered that the group was also utilizing the identities of approximately 1500 people living in South America, which were used to create playing accounts with various gambling businesses. The group was able to circumvent the anti-money laundering systems implemented by the gambling operators they targeted by only transferring small amounts of money to their accounts.
After withdrawing their winnings from gambling firms, the group’s two operations in Biscay and Alicante further laundered their funds through multiple companies and various high-value purchases involving real estate and vehicles.
Lastly, the Civil Guard mentioned that in addition to arresting 3 individuals and investigating 8 others, the authorities have also carried out six property searches which have resulted in the confiscation of dozens of items and more than 56 thousand euros of cash, along with the freezing of more than 670 bank accounts and cards.