Operation Athena II

Two Europol officers and the mobile office supported the Spanish General Customs Directorate with Operation Athena II in April 2010. Operation Athena II was a joint customs operation targeting the cross-border movement of cash and other monetary instruments used by criminal organisations for financing of their criminal activities and laundering of criminal proceeds. Customs authorities from 19 EU and non-EU countries (namely Algeria, Morocco, Norway, Tunisia and the USA) participated, along with international agencies like Europol, Interpol and the World Customs Organization. This operation led to:

The issuing of warning messages (reports on people who declared they were travelling with over €10 000, as well as alerts on suspicious cash movements)

The issuing of seizure messages (used to report detections and seizures of cash or other monetary instruments exceeding €10 000)

Cash seizures totalling 5.5 million EUR and cash warnings which came to 26.5 million EUR

Europol dealing with 110 warning messages and 128 seizure messages and performing searches in Europol systems which resulted in various links

The generation of four links by Europol that proved a staggering amount of cash was being moved across two EU countries.