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AMSTERDAM - A Dutch public prosecutor initiated a criminal investigation into possible falsification of accounts at Ahold over the weekend, raiding the company's headquarters, Reuters reports.
Ahold broke the news of the raid in a statement.
"Ahold has given its full cooperation to this investigation and is cooperating fully with the Dutch public prosecutor, as it has been doing and will continue to do with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission and the U.S. Department of Justice in connection with their ongoing investigations," Ahold said.
The public prosecutor said on Monday the specialized fiscal and economic crime unit, FIOD-ECD, had raided offices of Ahold and its accountants Deloitte & Touche on Saturday in a probe concerning the consolidation of joint ventures in Sweden/Norway, Brazil, Guatamala and Argentina.
The criminal investigation comes just one week after Ahold finished its own probe into almost a billion dollars in bookkeeping irregularities.
A spokeswoman for Ahold said "several boxes" of documents had been seized, but declined further comment. "It would be improper for me to comment while the investigation is continuing," she said.
Marcel Baas of Deloitte & Touche said the accountants' offices in Amsterdam, Rotterdam and Eindhoven had been raided and a "considerable amount of documents" had been confiscated.
Deloitte was being probed "in a quality of witness," and had received a prior notification of the prosecutor's visit.