US and Cyprus to formalize collaboration against financial crimes

The United States and Cyprus said Tuesday they’re formalizing their collaboration in fighting money laundering, sanctions evasion and other financial crimes with an agreement offering Cypriot law enforcement authorities U.S. expertise.

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The FBI and Cypriot police will sign an agreement in the coming days that includes the U.S. Department of Justice offering help to “proactively detect, investigate and prosecute cases involving financial crimes” in Cyprus, according to a joint statement.

Cypriot President Nikos Christodoulides last year invited FBI and Justice Department officials to assist with investigations into allegations that Cypriot financial service providers had helped Russian oligarchs skirt international sanctions.

Cyprus flag

The Cypriot flag flies in Nicosia, Cyprus. Cypriot law enforcement and the U.S. Department of Justice are set to sign an agreement on a collaboration to fight money laundering, sanction evasion and other financial crimes.  (Photo by Danil Shamkin/NurPhoto via Getty Images)

Although Cyprus has insisted it has abided by international sanctions imposed on Russia following its 2022 invasion of Ukraine, the U.S. has targeted several Cypriot-based companies, lawyers and accountants for allegedly assisting in dodging the sanctions.

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