The British Serious Fraud Office’s investigation of the operations of the Icelandic bank Kaupthing in the UK has led to Luxembourg. Iceland’s Special Prosecutor Ólafur Thór Hauksson met with SFO representatives in Amsterdam last week.
The headquarters of Kaupthing, now Arion Bank, in Reykjavík. Copyright: Icelandic Photo Agency.
Representatives of Belgian and Dutch investigators, as well as representatives of Europol’s economic crime department, also attended the meeting, Fréttabladid reports.
Hauksson said all these offices will cooperate with the investigation of the banking collapse. It is even being considered to give British investigators access to the questioning that has taken place in relation to this case in Iceland.
“It is absolutely clear that these countries must cooperate on this case as there are links between them. We have already exchanged information and we have declared that we are very keen on good cooperation,” Hauksson said.
The Office of the Special Prosecutor in Iceland and the SFO have already cooperated on an earlier stage of the investigation, when raids were conducted simultaneously at the facilities of former Kaupthing majority shareholder Exista in Iceland and the UK.
Hauksson said Europol’s role will increase as more emphasis is placed on the investigation of economic crimes in the near future. It is likely that cases related to the collapse of the Icelandic banks will land on the institution’s desk.
The Special Prosecutor’s investigation of Kaupthing’s affairs is ongoing. Former high-ranking executives of the bank, Hreidar Már Sigurdsson, Ingólfur Helgason, Magnús Gudmundsson and Steingrímur P. Kárason, are still on travel bans.
The position of former Kaupthing chairman Sigurdur Einarsson, who lives in London and is wanted by Interpol, hasn’t changed and Hauksson is still eager to question him. He said it is possible to question Einarsson in the UK—the former chairman refuses to come to Iceland and British police authorities have refrained from arresting him.
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