Massive fraud detected at Rotterdam Port

14th March 2006, Comments 0 comments

14 March 2006, AMSTERDAM — A multi-million euro fraud involving a maritime temp agency for Polish employees has been uncovered at Rotterdam Port.

14 March 2006

AMSTERDAM — A multi-million euro fraud involving a maritime temp agency for Polish employees has been uncovered at Rotterdam Port.

Five managers of the agency were arrested, a spokesperson for SIOD, the investigation department of the Social Affairs and Labour Ministry, said on Tuesday.

At least EUR 8 million in tax and social premiums went unpaid the spokesperson said. The money was owed to the government for 200 Polish plumbers, electricians, painters and carpenters who worked on refurbishing ships. They were given false papers describing them as seamen.

The Polish workers were paid EUR 5 an hour instead of the standard EUR 25 an hour. They worked 12 hours a day and the wages for a portion of each shift were allegedly not included in the agency's bookkeeping. The rest was paid at the standard rate for a seaman.

Ministry officials travelled to several places, including Cyprus and Poland, to investigate the allegations. 

The fraud came to light when Labour inspectors and military police officers noticed they were frequently coming across the same Polish 'seamen' whose ships never seemed to leave.

[Copyright Expatica News + ANP 2006]

Subject: Dutch news

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