Subcontractor gang suspected of stealing from building sites
Police in Vantaa say they have uncovered a criminal gang which has both run an undocumented subcontracting operation at building sites in the city and also stolen property from those sites and from business premises.
The police say that the group has operated in the south of Finland for about two years.
Initial calculations by tax authorities indicate that the group has failed to pay at least half a million euros in taxes.
Police say that those involved have stolen tens of thousands of euros' worth of property.
Juha Henttala of the Vantaa police says it is very unusual for shady operators in the construction industry to be involved in both theft and financial crimes.
Henttala also says that the criminal records of the suspects "deviate from the backgrounds of suspects in traditional financial crimes". For investigative reasons, he would not elaborate on those backgrounds.
There are about ten suspects in all. The police believe that four of them are leading figures, some of whom have asked others to commit theft.
Investigators believe that members of the group have committed about 40 separate thefts at construction areas, and in some business premises in cities including Vantaa, Espoo, Hyvinkää and Hämeenlinna.
Goods that were stolen include electric equipment and household appliances.
Henttala says that companies set up by the group worked as subcontractors at several building sites in the Helsinki area, and that they failed to pay mandatory fees and payments. The bookkeeping has also been slipshod.
Some of the suspects have been arrested and remanded. Police believe that they will complete the investigation this autumn.