Athens, 17thMarch 2023


Organized criminal group dismantled by the Directorate of Financial Police. The OCGsmuggled alcoholic beverages from Bulgaria, and sold them in liquor stores, nightclubs, etc.

21 OCG members arrested; leaderincluded

20,000 bottles of contraband alcoholic beverages seized among others;

evadedtaxes estimated at 200,000 euros


Total illicitprofit of the OCG estimated at several million euros

An organized criminal group (OCG) was dismantled by the Directorate of Financial Police, in cooperation with the Sub directorate of the Financial Police of Northern Greece, under the coordination of SEK. The OCG smuggled alcoholic beverages from Bulgaria and distributed them, in order to be sold, to liquor stores, mini markets, restaurants and nightclubs.

21 OCG members were arrested, including the OCG leader. The case file formed includes at least 9 more persons, whose personal data have been identified.

The investigation revealed that the OCG has systematically been smuggling alcoholic beverages of dubious origin from Bulgaria, reaping thus huge economic earnings since at least March 2022.

For their “business” goal, they used trucks in order to transport legalproducts to Greece, while the alcoholic beverages were covered on specially designed pallets, in such a way that they would not be noticed.They temporarily stored the beverages in a warehouse in an area of Evia. Then the illegal cargo was transported to warehouses in Attica, where fake Greek labels were placed on the bottles.

Subsequently, the OCG members channeled the beverage quantities to liquor stores, mini markets, restaurants and entertainment clubs in areas of Attica, Thessaloniki and other parts of Greece.

Searches were carried out in warehouses, business premises and vehicles in Attica and Thessaloniki, where the following items were found and seized:

-      19,588 bottles of alcoholic beverages,

-      50,000 labels of branded alcoholic beverages,

-      2 trucks and 5 private vehicles,

-      EUR 7,144,

-      30 cellphones, and

-      a multitude of tools and notes.

The duties and taxes evaded from the seized quantity of alcoholic beverages exceed 200,000 euros. In addition, the investigation revealed that since the beginning of its illegal activity, the OCG trafficked more than 500,000 bottles, corresponding to an illegal profit of several million euros.

The seized amount will be deposited in the Deposit and Loan Fund, the bottles will be handed over to the customs authorities, while the alcoholic beverages will be sampled and sent to the General Chemical State Laboratoryfor analysis.

Those arrested were taken to the competent public prosecutor's office.

It is reminded that citizens can contact, anonymously or by name, at the telephone number 11012 or at the e-mail address of the  Directorate of Financial Police, to provide information or to report illegal and reprehensible actions or activities against the sector of economy, public property, and social and security welfare and rights.