Switzerland launches first criminal investigation of violating Russia sanctions

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Swiss flag

Swiss authorities have initiated their first criminal investigation of an unspecified company for alleged violations of sanctions against Russia, Swiss Attorney General's Office announced on March 12.

According to the Financial Times, Swiss prosecutors suspect the company of circumventing Swiss law by utilizing its foreign subsidiaries. Details regarding the company's operations were not disclosed.

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The investigation commenced following a referral from the State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO), which oversees the enforcement of sanctions in Switzerland.

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FT’s report indicates that the prosecution can open a case against the company upon the SECO's request only if the severity of the offense justifies such action.

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Moreover, SECO requested that prosecutors launch a criminal case against another company for similar reasons. However, the attorney general rejected this request, determining it was not a matter of "special significance."

In late September 2023, Swiss banks Credit Suisse and UBS faced an investigation by the U.S. Department of Justice over their potential assistance to Russian citizens in evading sanctions.

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Read the original article on The New Voice of Ukraine