Israelis Suspected of Defrauding the French Treasury and Laundering the Money via Crypto

<p>The French social services were defrauded via false claims and stolen identities during the pandemic. Unemployment benefits were illegally obtained, which amounted to millions of euros that were later laundered via crypto and transferred to Israel.</p><p>During the covid-19 lockdowns, the French government allowed businesses and companies that were affected by the lockdowns to receive immediate compensation.</p><p>A group of individuals with dual-citizenship, Israeli and French took advantage of the fact the applications for compensation were not thoroughly examined.</p><p>Thousands of false applications were sent, defrauding the French Treasury. The French government became aware of the fraud; arrests were made but a large amount of the funds were never found.</p><p>France has been experiencing a significant rise in <a href=”” target=”_blank”>crypto-related fraud</a>. Approximately 25% of all suspected fraud cases in France are related to cryptocurrencies.</p><p>A joint investigation led by Europol, France and Israel discovered the individuals that have allegedly laundered the money via cryptocurrencies on behalf of the group that defrauded the French Treasury.</p><p>Local Israeli criminals lack the knowledge of money laundering via cryptocurrencies. Instead, they hire crypto experts to carry out the laundering on their behalf.</p><p>No details were provided as to how the cryptocurrencies were traced and whether a coin mixer was used to launder the funds.</p><p>According to <a href=”” target=”_blank” rel=”nofollow”>local reports</a>, three arrests were made. The prime suspect is Alexander Verlin (31) from Haifa. Verlin denies the allegations, saying that he owns a legitimate business.</p><p>A gag order was issued on the identity of the woman that has been arrested, who is denying the allegations. The third arrest was of a young religious man from Jerusalem who was arrested on his engagement day.</p><p>There were no intentions to arrest him until he threw his smartphone and laptop on the neighbour’s balcony when police officers were knocking on his door.</p><p>The investigation was conducted via the Cyber Unit of Police Unit 433 and the Yahalom Unit of the Tax Authority.</p><p>More Arrests Are Expected</p><p>During the international investigation, England and Canada approached Israel regarding crypto crimes that may have been committed by Israelis that are unrelated to the current investigation.</p><p>The Israeli police said that further developments on the ongoing investigation involving Canada and England will be released in the near future.</p>

This article was written by Matti Williamson at