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Court renews custody order of 2 suspects held in Turku money laundering case

A court has renewed the remand order of two men being held on suspicion of white-collar crimes in connection with the real estate firm Airiston Helmi.

Airiston Helmi -juttuun liittyvä vangitsemisoikeudenkäynti Vantaan käräjäoikeudessa 2.10.2018. Jutun pakkokeinotuomari istui etäyhteyden päässä Varsinais-Suomen käräjäoikeuden tiloissa Turussa. Kuvassa rikoksista epäilty venäläismies ja tämän asianajaja Tuomas Sunnari.
The 36-year-old Russian suspect and his lawyer Tuomas Sunnari in Southwest Finland District Court on Tuesday. Image: Vesa Moilanen / Lehtikuva

On Tuesday Southwest Finland District Court renewed the remand order of two men, an Estonian and a Russian. They are suspected of aggravated money laundering and tax evasion crimes related to the ongoing, large-scale investigation of the Turku-based real estate firm Airiston Helmi.

One of the suspects is a 36-year-old Russian citizen and former board member of Airiston Helmi while the other, a 51-year-old Estonian national, is allegedly connected to the firm through ownership of telephone subscriptions related to the firm, according to an STT report last week.

The Russian is suspected of aggravated tax evasion while the Estonian is suspected of being an accessory to aggravated tax evasion. The men were remanded in custody last week, a couple of days after law enforcement authorities carried out a major raid of 17 Airiston Helmi properties in the south-western Finnish archipelago last month.

Security police step in

Some 400 officials and authorities took part in the raid, including members of the National Bureau of Investigation, the Border Guard and the police. Days after the raid was carried out, it was reported that Supo, the Finnish Security Intelligence Service, was also taking part in the probe.

So far, authorities said that about three million euros in cash was found during the raids, along with an undisclosed amount of other currency, as well as hundreds of terabytes of data on computer gear.

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