In a statement, ASAE states that five suspects were accused in the process, of which four have a history of this type of offense.

The operation, through the National Criminal Information and Investigation Unit, was carried out as part of an investigation into the crimes of Counterfeiting, Money Laundering and Tax Fraud and eight home search warrants and two non-home search warrants were executed.

ASAE adds that the investigation “addressed a group of four industries, which were jointly dedicated to the production and sale of counterfeit articles, in particular sports shoes, to the hidden storage spaces for manufactured goods and the financial income generated and hidden, resulting from the illegal activity”.

In the course of the searches, 150 thousand articles were apprehended on suspicion of counterfeiting, including footwear and respective manufacturing components, such as metal cleats with the affixed brands, as well as 13 industrial machines, which were being used in the illicit production, four plotter printers, a computer and two flash drives (for data storage).

In the course of home search warrants, adds the ASAE, "a total of 117,180 Euros in cash were also apprehended, on suspicion of their illegal source and of constituting undeclared income to the tax administration".

21 inspectors from the National Criminal Information and Investigation Unit participated in the operation.