Singapore's Multi-Billion Dollar Asset Crackdown

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Martin Walker
Sep 24, 2023 at 12:08 pm

The Singaporean Police Force has taken hold of additional assets as part of an ongoing investigation into money laundering, boosting the overall value of confiscated funds to well over S$2.4 billion.

This reported sum has notably skyrocketed since the initial operation in August, marking a substantial increase.

Seizure of Assets Valuing More Than S$2.4 Billion

In a release dated September 20, the Singapore Police Force announced that further asset seizures occurred as a result of additional police operations.

The total assets confiscated by the authorities at present encompass a sum exceeding S$76 million in cash, cryptocurrency valued at S$38 million ($27.8 million), an array of 294 luxury bags, 546 pieces of jewelry, 68 gold bars, 204 electronic devices, and 164 high-end watches, reaching a total valuation surpassing S$1.127 million ($825,000).

The count of properties and vehicles subjected to prohibition disposal orders has surged to 110 and 64, respectively, with a combined value of S$1.2 million (~$879,000). Moreover, the Police have seized bottles of liquor, wine, and various ornaments.

Per the Police statement, the assets that have been seized, frozen, or subjected to prohibition of disposal orders are presently appraised at well over S$2.4 billion ($1.76 billion), while investigations remain ongoing.

Largest Money Laundering Investigation in Singapore

This recent development is linked to an ongoing money laundering case, deemed one of Singapore's most extensive crackdowns, involving 10 foreign nationals of Chinese origin holding passports from Cyprus, Turkey, Cambodia, Ni-Vanuatu, and China. Back in August, authorities conducted raids on multiple residences and apprehended these foreign individuals for allegedly laundering funds sourced from criminal activities and engaging in forgery.

While the suspects have been detained, the Police noted that approximately eight others were still evading arrest, and 12 individuals were cooperating with the ongoing investigation. During that period, the total value of cash and frozen assets exceeded S$1 billion ($737 million). This figure later surged to S$1.8 billion in September, according to prosecutors, following thorough investigations.

Among the 10 foreign suspects arrested, Vang Shuiming, a Turkish national, faces four charges related to money laundering and one charge of forgery. Shuiming sought bail from the court, but his request was denied. According to a prosecutor, the Turkish suspect and his brother are wanted in China for involvement in illegal gambling.

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