German police mount raids in COVID-19 aid fraud probe

May 31, 2022, 4:36 AM | Updated: 4:45 am

BERLIN (AP) — Police raided homes and offices in northern and western Germany on Tuesday as part of an investigation into a case involving five men accused of fraudulently applying for 26 million ($28 million) worth of pandemic-linked aid.

The German government drew up a series of aid packages to help businesses withstand the impact of lockdowns and other restrictions at the height of the coronavirus pandemic.

The suspects in this investigation — men aged 26 to 62 — are suspected of making at least 363 aid applications under false pretenses “for their own purposes and for companies that commissioned them,” according to a police statement. It’s believed to have resulted in a loss of several million euros, it added.

The investigation was launched in April 2020 after a development bank in the northern state of Lower Saxony reported suspicious activity. Twenty-five properties were raided on Tuesday, including the five suspects’ homes, but police said there were no arrests. They froze assets totaling 3.5 million euros, seizing cash and expensive watches.

In a separate case, a 20-year-old man was on Monday convicted of fraud in the southwestern city of Freiburg for taking 5.7 million euros from a doctors’ association last year for a test center he never opened, German news agenc dpa reported.

A bank later returned the money.

The court will decide after a year’s probation whether to impose a sentence under juvenile law. He was ordered to pay 1,500 euros to charity and cover the costs of the proceedings, dpa reported.

___

Follow all of AP’s pandemic coverage at https://apnews.com/hub/coronavirus-pandemic

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

AP

Associated Press

Army identifies 2 soldiers killed by falling tree in Georgia

FORT BENNING, Ga. (AP) — The Army identified two soldiers killed during training in the north Georgia mountains as a special forces medical sergeant and a recent West Point graduate. Staff Sgt. George Taber and 2nd Lt. Evan Fitzgibbon died Tuesday after they were struck by a falling tree while sheltering during “a weather-induced training […]
8 hours ago
Associated Press

Man gets 12 years in case that tested broad search warrants

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — A Virginia man has been sentenced to nearly 12 years in prison on federal bank robbery charges in a case that tested the constitutionality of broad search warrants that use Google location history to identify people who were near the scene of a crime. The Richmond Times-Dispatch reports that Okello Chatrie, […]
8 hours ago
A customer pumps gas at an Exxon gas station, Tuesday, May 10, 2022, in Miami. Gasoline prices are ...
Associated Press

EXPLAINER: How is inflation affecting commuting costs?

NEW YORK (AP) — Gas prices have fallen from the record highs they reached earlier this summer, but they’re still much higher than a year ago. And with inflation driving up the cost of pretty much everything else, finding the funds to cover your commute may be increasingly tricky. “Being able to get to work […]
8 hours ago
FILE - The price of regular unleaded gas is advertised for just under $4 a gallon at a Woodman's, W...
Associated Press

Tips for saving on your commute amid high inflation

NEW YORK (AP) — Gas prices are falling but still higher than they were a year ago. And inflation has made most everything else more expensive. If you’re looking to save money on your commute, here are some tips: IF YOU HAVE A CAR: MAKE A DRIVING STRATEGY AAA recommends avoiding traffic and adjusting your […]
8 hours ago
Britain's Prime Minister Boris Johnson hosts a reception for the winners of the Points of Light Awa...
Associated Press

UK meets energy firms but no help yet for hard-hit consumers

LONDON (AP) — British Prime Minister Boris Johnson and senior ministers held inconclusive talks Thursday with energy companies amid mounting pressure to help residents cope with soaring gas and electricity prices. Johnson, who is in his final weeks as prime minister, joined Treasury chief Nadhim Zahawi and Business Secretary Kwasi Kwarteng at the meeting with […]
8 hours ago
Associated Press

Taliban say bombing kills prominent Afghan cleric in Kabul

ISLAMABAD (AP) — A bombing killed a prominent Taliban cleric on Thursday at his religious center in the Afghan capital of Kabul, authorities said, the latest attack to strike the country in the year since the former insurgents seized power. Officials identified the cleric as Rahimullah Haqqani, a name that signifies he graduated from Darul […]
8 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

...
Day & Night Air Conditioning, Heating and Plumbing

Ways to prevent clogged drains and what to do if you’re too late

While there are a variety of ways to prevent clogged drains, it's equally as important to know what to do when you're already too late.
...
Dr. Richard Carmona

Great news: Children under 5 can now get COVID-19 vaccine

After more than two years of battle with an invisible killer, we can now vaccinate the youngest among us against COVID-19. This is great news.
...
Day & Night Air Conditioning, Heating and Plumbing

Most plumbing problems can be fixed with regular maintenance

Instead of waiting for a problem to happen, experts suggest getting a head start on your plumbing maintenance.
German police mount raids in COVID-19 aid fraud probe