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Irish Police Recover 900,000 Euros in VAT Fraud Case

Nearly a million Euros have been recovered after Irish police arrested two in a sophisticated online fraud sting.

Gardaí have arrested two men—foreign nationals aged 31 and 67 years respectively—and have frozen a bank account containing €900,000 in ill-gotten funds.

The men were able to infect a European company with malware that gave them access to an account used by the company to make VAT payments. The criminals changed the transfer details so that the VAT payments went directly into a bank account that they controlled.

The two suspects were arrested in Dublin by the Garda’s Money Laundering Investigation Unit and detained under Section 4 of the Criminal Justice Act, according to reports. They will be held for at least 24 hours and questioned.

The victimized company’s identity wasn’t revealed—and there is likely more to the story than what’s being initially reported.

“It was unclear whether that cash frozen in a bank account represents the entire sum of money the company was fraudulently induced to send to the wrong account,” the Irish Times reported. “The Garda said that once the funds were received there were a number of onward transactions, both within the Republic and outside it. Such transactions are normally done rapidly to scramble the money trail before a criminal investigation has time to act.”

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