It was in the newspapers in February 2016 already: A 64-year-old Dutch man, registered as resident on the Caribbean island of Anguilla, was remanded in custody, suspected of money laundering proceeds of crime to the value of over 1,000,000 euros. For some months his name had been on the international list of wanted persons after police raids were carried out in some towns in the Netherlands and Sint Maarten in November last year. Seizures on these occasions included several hundreds of thousands of euros in cash, a firearm, synthetic drugs, two parasailing boats, and a few kilos of soft drugs.
The investigation started as a result of a file of FIU-the Netherlands. FIU-the Netherlands analysed a so-called A-B-C real-estate transaction, and it emerged that, from an economic point of view, there was no plausible explanation for the increase in value of holiday villas that were sold several times on the same day. This increase in value allowed the man, via a foundation and a few companies, to book a legitimate profit of 300,000 euros in one go.
It was not possible to find any information at all about the foundation's or companies' business activities. In addition to the property transaction, cashless payments to the suspect's companies were identified. These payments were made from a business account of another company and it emerged that deposits to the account had mainly been made in cash. There was no legitimate explanation for these payments either. The man, for that matter, had been in contact with the law on other occasions. No one can deny that he has a certain sense of humour. One of his companies turned out to be called after the criminal investigation that led to him serving a long prison sentence some twenty years ago.