Police uncover money laundering via digital currency machines in Riga's shopping centers

  • 2021-02-02
  • LETA/TBT Staff

RIGA - Investigators from the State Police have uncovered money laundering via digital currency machines (DCM) installed in Riga's shopping centers and detained a Polish citizen in connection with the crime, LETA was told at the State Police.

Since last November the cybercrime unit of the State Police has been investigating a money-laundering scheme in which two DCMs had been deployed in Riga's shopping centers for illegal digital currency transactions.

The provider of the service offered to buy and sell digital currencies without vetting the clients as required by law. Digital currencies were traded, accepting and dispensing cash without identifying the person and the origin of the money.

Although the DCMs had been installed in accordance with lease agreements concluded with the two shopping centers in Riga, the business had not been officially registered in Latvia and the equipment had not undergone the necessary compliance examination.

The DCMs were operated without compliance certificates.

A Polish national who had been providing the technical maintenance of DCMs in Latvia and Estonia, was detained as part of the investigation on January 10.

Police also seized the digital currency machines and EUR 97,000 worth of cash.

The investigation into the money-laundering case is ongoing.