Suspects in operation against illegal cigarette trade surrender

Three investigated for participation in an international gang specializing in the illegal trade of cigarettes turned themselves in at the Regional Superintendence of the Federal Police (PF) in Rio de Janeiro, this Monday morning (28). With that, the number of prisoners in Operation Smoke Free, launched last week, rose to 17. The names of those arrested and investigated were not released.

The PF action was aimed at complying with 27 preventive arrest warrants and 50 search and seizure warrants, issued by the 3rd Federal Criminal Court, in addition to blocking, kidnapping and seizures of assets, such as real estate, cryptocurrencies, vehicles and cash, valued at BRL 300 million.

According to the PF, the money obtained from the illegal sale of cigarettes was laundered and irregularly sent abroad, with the support of a debtor group to the Union that failed to collect about R$ 2 billion from public coffers.

One of those arrested in the operation was businessman José Eduardo Neves Cabral, son of former governor Sérgio Cabral, who has been in prison since November 2016 for convictions in cases of the Lava Jato task force in Rio de Janeiro. José Cabral surrendered to the PF on Thursday (24) and claims innocence.

Those investigated in Operation Smoke Free may be responsible for the commission of crimes of tax evasion, simulated duplicate, qualified receipt, active and passive corruption, money laundering and currency evasion.

Translated to english by RJ983

From Brazil, by EBC News