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Eight arrests and kidnappings for 133 million euros

Eight arrests and kidnappings for 133 million euros

RACALE – Seven arrests (one in prison and six under house arrest) plus a disqualification procedure: this is the result of an operation carried out this morning by the financiers of the Lecce District Command, with the technical support of the Central Investigation of Organized Crime Service, within the scope of the investigation with its center in Racale and which also extended to Other Italian cities. The judge signed the proceedings for the preliminary investigations with Lecce Marcelo Rizzo, at the suggestion of the Public Prosecutor Giovanna Canarelli.

The defendants, in various forms of promoters, regulators, administrators, nominees, and independents, are charged with the offenses of conspiracy, issuing and/or using invoices for non-existent transactions, money laundering, tax evasion and fraudulent bankruptcy.

Seven out of thirteen suspects have been arrested, as mentioned. He ended up in prison Emmanuel Esposito, 40 years old from Raquel. at home: Stephen Alessandrini34 years old, resident of Taviano, although residing in Pleven, Bulgaria; Andrea Cheetah28 years old, from Taviano; Pascual Mazola54 years old, from Molfetta; Mercury loyal56 years old, from Taviano; Tommaso Sperry72, from Taviano; Fulvio Veneri, 41 years old, from Taviano. The entrepreneurial activity disqualification measure was applied against Joseph Caldarola60 years of Corato.

In the middle is Racale’s company

The activity concerns, in particular, a professional operator in the trade of gold, precious metals and investment gold, registered in the appropriate list of the Bank of Italy, with operational headquarters and production plant in Racalle. This is the Esposito Group Spa, with registered office in Rome and other operational offices in Catanzaro, Arezzo and Marcianise (Caserta). According to the investigators of “Yellow Fire”, the operator will be at the center of a dense network of paper companies (Italian and foreign) and a complex system of tax fraud and international money laundering.

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With regard to joint-stock companies and natural persons with internal responsibility roles, the investigating judge of the Court of Lecce ordered preventive seizure – also in the form of values ​​and financial resources equivalent to more than 133 million euros, as profit from the various alleged offences. Three buildings for commercial and craft use, and an entire branch of the company, worth about 1 million 400 thousand euros, were also seized in connection with the disputed bankruptcy offences.

Investigations, initiated on the basis of independent inspections, tax and banking activities, conducted by the Economic and Financial Police Unit of Lecce against the aforementioned “professional operator” and subsequently coordinated by the Public Prosecutor’s Office of Lecce, revealed a complex system of fraud systematically extending inside and outside Europe, That is, between Portugal, the Czech Republic, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Hungary, Great Britain, Albania, Australia and Switzerland.

Companies “paper mills” to pay amounts

The investigations, developed by the investigative specialists and in parallel with the soldiers of the Organized Crime Investigation Group, would have revealed that the owners of the Salento company, with the help of some professionals, benefit from a clear network of candidates, many of them. Of the participants in the criminal conspiracy, from 2016 to 2020, they would have used several “paper mill” companies, outside Italy, for which large sums of money could have been claimed, justified by the issuance of invoices for non-existent operations suitable for simulating a purchase “Dispatches” of gold from abroad.

At about the same time, the huge liquidity recovered by Salento from mostly foreign banks could have been withdrawn, through large cash withdrawals, and re-entered on the national territory, also partly used for further “foreign-to-foreign” financial transactions, resulting in further complicated the investigations and caused them to lose all traceability with the original offer. It was calculated that in just three years, 120 million euros in cash would have been withdrawn abroad, which also caused the foreign authorities to worry.

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Get rid of the assets. in a fake way

The alleged criminal partnership, to prevent the Department of the Treasury from collecting the huge unpaid taxes, by a series of fraudulent acts allegedly freed itself in a fictitious manner from the assets of the company – destined for an irreversible state of instability and then bankruptcy – transferring them to another company operating in the same field and actually attributing to the same governance.

Thus, according to a predetermined illegal scheme, the headquarters could have been fictitiously transferred to Bulgaria in an attempt to avoid or escape any civil judicial consequences caused by the creditors (primarily the treasury). The operation involved various Italian provinces (Rome, Bari, Catanzaro, Arezzo, Barletta and Caserta), including searches and seizures. Among the defendants’ advocates are lawyers Biagio Palama, Francesca Conte and Michele Ponceña.