A 24-year-old man from western Sydney has become the 13th person to face court for his alleged role in a deceptive $20-million fraud and money-laundering operation.
He appeared before Sydney Central Local Court charged with various offences related to handling money or property that are the proceeds of crime. He could face up to 10 years in prison.
The South Wentworthville man was issued a court attendance notice by Australian Federal Police investigators as part of Operation Bordelon, a Serious Financial Crime Taskforce operation targeting a criminal syndicate that allegedly used labour hire and payroll companies associated with the building and construction industry to defraud the Commonwealth.
Allegedly used two bank accounts to siphon off money
It is alleged by investigators that the accused man received, possessed and distributed a total of almost $1,4-million – proceeds of an illegal scheme to siphon off money that should have been remitted to the Australian Taxation Office.
He allegedly used two bank accounts that he controlled to facilitate this activity on behalf of another man – who is described as being “of long-term interest to organised crime investigators” – for the benefit of that man’s relatives and close associates.
Commander Kirsty Schofield of the AFP said this additional charge was a result of outstanding detective work by AFP investigators, who have spent much of the past year digging further into the activities of this syndicate.
“The AFP is committed to out-working and out-smarting these organised crime groups, and part of that is targeting them at their most vulnerable, namely when they try and legitimise their illegally obtained proceeds of crime,” she stated.
Taskforce says it is ‘unravelling the detail’ of scheme
“Our specialist investigators want to identify all criminality in this complex scheme, and that’s why another man will be facing the court on a very serious charge. Anyone else involved in this scheme should be worried – we are unravelling the detail of this scheme and will not hesitate to charge other people if the evidence allows us.”
ATO Deputy Commissioner and head of the Serious Financial Crime Taskforce, Will Day, said, “Serious financial criminals lie, cheat and steal from every one of us. The additional charge today shows that the [taskforce]does not take financial crime lightly, and collectively we’re working together to share intelligence and bring offenders to account.”
The Serious Financial Crime Taskforce is an ATO-led joint-agency taskforce established in July 2015.