Israel arrests three in international money laundering probe

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JERUSALEM (Reuters) - Israeli authorities said on Monday they had arrested three suspects as part of an investigation into "large-scale fraud" against the French treasury and the theft and laundering of millions of euros with cryptocurrencies.

The Israel Tax Authority and police said in a statement they had been investigating a number of people in recent months suspected of systematically laundering money.

Some of the money, they said, "originated from crimes committed abroad, while using digital currencies on various platforms in order to obscure and disguise the identity of the owners and the movement of the money".

"The investigation focused on the suspicion of large-scale fraud against the state treasury in France that was carried out from Israel, and the theft of millions of euros and the laundering of the funds by converting it into cryptocurrency," the statement said.

It gave no further details into the alleged crimes.

The investigation was handled in cooperation with Europol and French police, it said.

Three main suspects were arrested and a number of others were being held for questioning, it said.

(Reporting by Ari Rabinovitch; Editing by Steven Scheer and Nick Macfie)