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Freezing of cryptocurrency used by criminals results in jump in CAB proceeds

The jump in frozen assets is due in the main to the granting of a freezing order over cryptocurrency to the value of €53 million.

Image: Garda Press

THE ANNUAL CRIMINAL Assets Bureau (CAB) report has revealed that nearly €65 million in assets were frozen in the last year, a significant increase on the previous year.

The jump in frozen assets in 2019 is due in the main to the granting of a freezing order over cryptocurrency to the value of €53 million.

Justice Minister Charlie Flanagan will today brief Cabinet ministers on the 2019 CAB Annual Report which reveals that officers returned in excess of €3.9 million to the Exchequer. 

This includes around €1.6 million under the Proceeds of Crime legislation and €2 million under Revenue legislation. Around €300,000 was also recovered in Social Welfare overpayments.

A number of individuals had their social welfare payments either terminated or reduced, resulting in a total savings of €2.3 million.

Last year, a total of 50 individuals and companies were assessed under taxation law, resulting in a total tax figure of €11.7 million. Orders were made to the payment of tax to the value of €5.8 million.

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The minister will tell Cabinet today that the report marks a period of continued growth in new cases being brought before the Court, with 31 new applications before the High Court in 2019 under the Proceeds of Crime legislation.

The majority of these actions were taken against assets gained from the proceeds of drug trafficking, followed by actions relating to frauds and thefts of various categories.

CAB is an independent statutory body, established in 1996, which carries out investigations into the suspected proceeds of criminal conduct.

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