In a statement, the PJ states that, within the scope of the Open Door operation and an investigation that is currently underway at the Central Department of Investigation and Criminal Action, it launched an operation in the northern part of the country “with a view to executing search warrants and seizures".

“The searches were carried out in homes, law firms and accounting offices and had the intervention of a JIC [criminal investigation judge] and a Public Prosecutor”, the statement reads.

The PJ adds that this operation “succeeds others”, already carried out in March, also in the north of the country, “related to the regularity and legality of the procedure for acquiring Portuguese nationality (…), and arises from the need to obtain proof in new locations identified in the research already carried out”.

The investigation looks into facts likely to frame the practice of crimes of corruption, forgery of documents, money laundering and tax fraud.

The PJ also says that the investigation is continuing, “in order to clarify the nature and dimension of the criminal activity under investigation”.

Roman Abramovich

One of the cases of Portuguese nationality being investigated relates to the Russian oligarch Roman Abramovich, former owner of Chelsea football club (United Kingdom), who became a Portuguese citizen under the Nationality Law for Sephardic Jews.

In question are alleged irregularities committed in processes of granting Portuguese nationality to descendants of Sephardic Jews, which are under investigation. Sephardic Jews are Jews from the Iberian Peninsula expelled from Portugal in the 16th century.