May 4, 2018 / 4:04 PM / 5 months ago

Dutch firms probed for alleged breaches of EU sanctions on Russia

AMSTERDAM (Reuters) - Prosecutors in the Netherlands said on Friday they have opened a criminal investigation into seven Dutch companies and their directors for allegedly breaching European Union sanctions against Moscow, by helping Russia build a bridge to Crimea.

FILE PHOTO: A general view shows a road-and-rail bridge, which is constructed to connect the Russian mainland with the Crimean Peninsula, in the Kerch Strait, Crimea April 25, 2018. Picture taken April 25, 2018. REUTERS/Pavel Rebrov/File Photo

The companies involved are alleged to have supplied machines, machine parts and other services for the construction of the 19 kilometre long bridge spanning the Strait of Kerch, the prosecutor’s office said.

This represented a violation of sanctions imposed by the European Union after the annexation of the Crimean peninsula by Russia in 2014, the prosecutors said, as they explicitly ruled out the sale of machines and related services for use in Crimea.

FILE PHOTO: A general view shows a road-and-rail bridge, which is constructed to connect the Russian mainland with the Crimean peninsula, with a fisherman seen in the foreground, in the Kerch Strait, Crimea April 14, 2018. REUTERS/Pavel Rebrov/File Photo

“This is a serious offence, undermining the EU sanction regime”, the prosecutors said in a statement.

Individuals found to have breached sanctions can be sentenced to up to six years in prison or a maximum fine of 82,000 euros (72,373 pounds), a spokeswoman for the prosecutor’s office said, while companies can be fined up to 820,000 euros.

The prosecutors did not name the companies involved, but said the transactions under investigation took place between November 2015 and the latter part of 2017.

The spokeswoman declined to give any further details.

Reporting by Bart Meijer; Editing by Alexander Smith

0 : 0
  • narrow-browser-and-phone
  • medium-browser-and-portrait-tablet
  • landscape-tablet
  • medium-wide-browser
  • wide-browser-and-larger
  • medium-browser-and-landscape-tablet
  • medium-wide-browser-and-larger
  • above-phone
  • portrait-tablet-and-above
  • above-portrait-tablet
  • landscape-tablet-and-above
  • landscape-tablet-and-medium-wide-browser
  • portrait-tablet-and-below
  • landscape-tablet-and-below