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2021.01.26 17:45

Ukrainians detained after illegally bringing over 300 workers to Lithuania

BNS2021.01.26 17:45

Lithuania’s law enforcement have brought formal suspicions against five Ukrainian citizens who are accused of illegally bringing over 300 Ukrainians and Belarusians for work in the country.

They are suspected of evading over 500,000 euros in taxes, the Financial Crime Investigation Service (FNTT) said on Tuesday.

According to a press release by the FNTT, officers have conducted 16 searches in Vilnius, seizing accounting documents, computers, mobile phones, cash and handwritten notes.

The service suspects that the scheme's organizers, who owned five enterprises in Lithuania and Poland, used forged documents to make it look like their companies in Poland hired workers from Ukraine and Belarus and then posted them to Lithuania for work under subcontracting agreements.

Read more: Vilnius company fined for illegally employing Ukrainian workers

The evidence collected suggests that the workers were, in fact, not employed in any of the companies and that taxes were not paid in either of the countries.

The organisers had contracts with 13 companies in Lithuania's construction sector and the illegally employed workers carried out electrical works for them.

FNTT suspects that the state lost over 278,000 euros in VAT and more than 240,000 euros in corporate income tax as a result of the scheme.

A court has authorised the arrest of two of the suspects and less stringent measures of restraint against the others.

FNTT notes that this is not the first time that it has disclosed a tax evasion scheme involving fictitious postings of third-country workers from Poland to Lithuania.