France ‘arrests Lycamobile executives’ in money laundering raid

20 June 2016 | Alan Burkitt-Gray


French authorities have raided the Paris office of mobile virtual operator Lycamobile, arrested 19 executives and charged nine of them.

According to BuzzFeed News, the charges are linked to suspicions of money laundering and tax fraud.

Capacity tried to contact Lycamobile’s London office for a comment but all available staff were in a meeting.

France’s Parquet National Financier, the government’s financial investigation agency, issued the following statement to BuzzFeed News on Friday: “On Wednesday and Thursday, 19 people suspected of being involved in a money-laundering system implicating Lycamobile and Lycamobile Services were arrested.

“The arrests were part of a Paris judicial investigation into money laundering and VAT fraud. Several places in Paris and its outskirts were raided and police seized about €130,000 in cash and €850,000 from bank accounts.

“Nine people were brought in front of a judge on Friday and charged with money laundering among other things, and eight were released on bail while one man was remanded in custody. The charges relate to money laundering of at least €17 million and VAT fraud of several million euros.”

Capacity left messages with Lycamobile’s office in London and with former employees, but so far there has been no comment from the company.