Fugitive businessman Korkmaz arrested in Austria


ISTANBUL

Sezgin Baran Korkmaz, a Turkish businessman, wanted for money laundering, was arrested in Austria on June 19 at the request of the United States.

Interpol previously issued a Red Notice for Korkmaz, who fled Turkey in early December 2020 as part of investigations by Turkey’s Financial Crimes Investigation Board (MASAK) into the SBK holding company in Korkmaz and the six holding companies for money laundering allegations in four provinces.

Korkmaz had been wanted by Turkey and the United States

In investigations conducted last year, MASAK teams determined that Korkmaz companies were involved in the $ 132 million money laundering program in Turkey.

As a result of the investigations, Istanbul prosecutors issued arrest warrants against 19 business executives. Eleven of these suspects were arrested, but it emerged that eight others, including Korkmaz, were abroad.

Korkmaz was a business partner of Jacob Kingston and his brother Isaiah, managers of a biodiesel company in Salt Lake City, United States.

The brothers pleaded guilty in the United States to the tax credit program involving the Washakie Renewable Energy company, which U.S. prosecutors said was creating bogus production records to obtain renewable fuel tax credits, then laundered the product from 2010 to 2016.

Mehmet Demir, the attorney for the fugitive businessman, confirmed his arrest at the request of the United States, and said his trial would first take place in Austria. Demir noted that Turkey is also demanding Korkmaz’s extradition.

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