Hong Kong customs officials have arrested seven people in connection with the territory’s biggest-ever money laundering case, involving about $1.8 billion.

Those arrested were allegedly part of a large-scale international syndicate that used shell companies and bank accounts to transfer money from overseas to Hong Kong.

The syndicate received significant sums, with one account receiving up to $12.8 million in a single day.

Hong Kong Customs authorities have arrested seven people in connection with the region’s biggest-ever money laundering case, involving about $1.8 billion, some of them linked to a scam case in India.

Seven local residents, aged between 23 and 74, were part of a large-scale international syndicate that transferred huge sums of money from abroad to the city under the guise of running international trade businesses, customs officials said on Friday. used various shell companies and bank accounts to .

One account once received $12.8 million in a single day, he said.

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A total of $371 million is suspected to be linked to a scam case involving a mobile application, said IP Tung Chung, head of the Customs Financial Investigation Bureau. In India. But he did not say which application it was.

Press conference

Customs Financial Investigation Bureau chief Ip Tung-ching, center, deputy head Yeung Yuk-man, left, and divisional commander Yu Yiu-wing attend a press conference on a money laundering case in Hong Kong on Feb. 16, 2024. are doing (AP Photo/Louise Delmotte)

Some of those arrested were non-Chinese residents of Hong Kong, he said without giving details.

Authorities believe that the syndicate received remittances from India in the name of exporting electronic equipment, diamonds, gems and precious metals. The money was then transferred to Hong Kong bank accounts for money laundering.

He said that these operations of money laundering provide a protective umbrella for the illegal profits of the criminals.

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Law enforcement Hong Kong, India and elsewhere contributed to the operation, making its success possible, Ip said.

The bureau’s divisional commander U Yeo Wing said officers exchanged intelligence with Indian authorities and learned that some of the money came from two jewelry companies that Indian authorities say are linked to the scam. are

He said a 34-year-old Hong Kong resident was arrested in late January, suspected to be the mastermind of the syndicate.

Authorities have seized electronic devices, documents and more than 8,000 carats of suspected synthetic stones apparently meant for export to India.

The investigation was ongoing.

The previous record money laundering case involved nearly $767 million and nine arrests in January 2023.


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