AMSTERDAM Dutch and British authorities seized assets worth 6 million euros ($6.40 million), including luxury cars, a speedboat and villas and made one arrest after a cross-border tax fraud investigation.
Dutch prosecutors said they had arrested a British woman, 46, as a result of the probe, which was triggered after she and her 51-year-old Dutch husband withdrew more than 300,000 euros in cash with credit cards linked to offshore accounts.
A spokeswoman for the Dutch financial crime prosecutor said the operation, conducted with Britain's HM Revenue and Customs, was part of a broader crackdown on offshore tax fraud which also led to last week's raids involving suspected tax evasion by clients of Credit Suisse.
The couple owned a marketing company in the Manchester area and were suspected of concealing earnings using offshore bank accounts in the Netherlands, Germany and Austria, prosecutors said in a statement on Wednesday.
Prosecutors seized luxury cars including a Jaguar, a BMW and a Bentley in the operation, during which the suspects' house in Britain was searched as well as two villas in the Netherlands, a house in Austria and their company's Manchester headquarters.
"By working jointly in this investigation, both the Netherlands and the UK want to demonstrate that they will take measures against the deposit of non-declared assets abroad," prosecutors said.
Their profits were laundered in the Netherlands, Dutch prosecutors alleged.
They said they were guided in their investigation by other sources beyond raw information about the cash withdrawals and tax payments, mentioning data from 3,000 Dutch depositors in Switzerland that fuelled the Credit Suisse investigation.
($1 = 0.9382 euros)
(Reporting By Thomas Escritt; Editing by Larry King)