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Belarus, USA to enhance cooperation in criminal investigation

The Central Office of the Investigative Committee of Belarus hosted joint events with representatives of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) of the USA on 21-23 January.

During the working sessions, the parties discussed results of responding to requests for legal assistance and information exchange during investigation of criminal cases. Belarusian investigators and their U.S. colleagues exchanged information which can be helpful in investigating crimes in the field of advanced technology.

Such cooperation already yielded results in the past, helping identify and prosecute persons involved in cybercrimes. For example, in November 2019 thanks to information exchange between the Investigative Committee and the FBI, the investigation found a 28-year-old Grodno resident who had committed cybercrimes. The criminal investigation is still underway and the Belarusian and U.S. law enforcement agencies continue exchanging information.

The IRS has recently uncovered a criminal network that is engaged in illegal tax refunds worth more than $50 million. The network involves several residents of the post-Soviet states who came in contact with one of defendants in criminal cases that are under investigation of Belarus' Investigative Committee. During the joint events, Belarusian investigators questioned the accused in the presence of representatives of the FBI and IRS.

The parties also drew up a plan of action regarding criminal investigation of cases about which both the parties collect information that lays the basis for the body of evidence.