The Strategist

Crooks Promote Price Rise in London

07/27/2015 - 14:39

Foreign crooks launder billions of illicit dollars, buying property in London, which affects the value of real estate, said the British National Agency for the fight against crime.

According to head of the department for combating economic crime Donald Toon, property prices in London are rising due to the fact that crooks and criminals from abroad "want to hide their money here in the United Kingdom."

- I believe that this has affected the prices on the London real estate market - he said in an interview with Times. - The prices in the most expensive segment of the market are artificially increased due to the fact that foreign criminals want to keep their money in the UK. This leads to a skewed on the real estate market. "

The official added that he is very concerned about the number of houses and apartments that are bought by foreign offshore companies, many of which are used for money laundering. According to the Times, the last three months, the UK has received 150 million pounds ($ 233 million) as property taxes, acquisitions, trusts and investment funds.

The tax was introduced in the 2013-14 fiscal year, and then charges totaled 100 million pounds, 80% of this amount came from two of the most affluent areas of London (Westminster, Kensington and Chelsea).

- If real estate agents suspect that the buyer is trying to launder money, then they are obliged to inform the authorities, - said Tong. Failure to report such operations can be regarded as a criminal offense, he added.