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Update: Operation North Overcast, Gold Coast

Detectives from the Taskforce Maxima Criminal Economy Unit have charged a woman following continuing investigations into an alleged $1 million money laundering syndicate with links to the Gold Coast.

Operation North Overcast commenced last year following inquiries into an alleged former Rebels OMCG member and his associates. The investigation subsequently identified a number of people allegedly involved in the organised theft of money from automatic teller machines and the laundering of some of that money to associates in Bulgaria.

A 36-year-old Tamborine Mountain woman was arrested and charged on Saturday with dealing with proceeds of crime under the Commonwealth Criminal Code Act.

It is alleged she was involved in a number of transactions involving approximately $55,000 in cash which was sent to a different people in Bulgaria.

She is due to appear in the Southport Magistrates Court on March 29.

Detective Inspector Phillip Stevens said the woman was allegedly part of a large network of people involved in transferring money stolen from ATM skimming activity offshore.

“This is the sixth Queensland person charged with money laundering offences as part of the operation being conducted by Taskforce Maxima detectives,” Detective Inspector Stevens said.

“Police allege the group were involved in the manufacturing and fitting of card skimming equipment to ATMs in South East Queensland and interstate between 2009 and 2015.

“After obtaining transactional card data, they have then created ‘cloned’ ATM cards to steal more than $1 million, with part of that sent to Bulgaria.

“The arrest of this woman as well as others, in recent times, should be a warning to those that are engaging in this type of activity. Facilitating the laundering of criminal proceeds is an extremely serious matter and one that Taskforce Maxima’s Criminal Economy Unit actively pursues.

“It also should send a clear message that if you’re involved in criminal activity, your conduct will be held to account regardless of when the offence was committed,” Detective Inspector Stevens said.

Anyone with information which could assist with this matter should contact Crime Stoppers anonymously via 1800 333 000 or crimestoppers.com.au 24hrs a day.

Crime Stoppers is a registered charity and community volunteer organisation working in partnership with the Queensland Police Service.

For all non-urgent police reporting or general police inquiries contact Policelink on 131 444 or Policelink.qld.gov.au 24hrs a day.

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