Netherlands tackles real estate fraud

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Transactions in the property sector will be monitored more closely, say Dutch ministers.

3 November 2008

THE HAGUE - The Netherlands plans to take a tougher line on crime in the real estate sector.

In a letter to MPs, Justice Minister Ernst Hirsch Ballin, and Interior Minister Guusje ter Horst have announced stricter monitoring of solicitors.

Officials will be informed by the land registry office if a property is sold for an unusually high amount. In future, solicitors will be obliged to inform the inland revenue and Public Prosecutor's Office if they are suspicious about a transaction.

The government also plans to clamp down on mortgage fraud resulting from unrealistic estimates.

The sector has been hit by a series of fraud cases in the past few years. The government says criminals are attracted to the sector as transactions lack transparency.

[Radio Netherlands / Expatica]

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