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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Russian, British Police Link Up to Fight Crime

British and Russian law enforcement bodies have agreed to exchange information to fight organized crime groups, money laundering, illegal trade of weaponry and drug trafficking, a top British police officer said Wednesday.

Albert Pacey, director general of the National Criminal Intelligence Service, told a press conference that very large quantities of money were being laundered through the financial institutions of London.

"These large sums are sometimes from the Russian Federation," Pacey said, adding that last year British police had recorded 13,000 "suspicious financial transactions" including 200 related to Russia.

"That is not a large number but what distinguished them were the amounts of money involved which ranged from a half a million pounds ($787,500) to several million," Pacey said.

Valery Gorchakov, head of the Interior Ministry's international department, said Russian and British police were currently investigating three cases of money laundering by Russian mafia gangs in the United Kingdom worth some 10 million pounds.

Pacey said the British police were also worried that Russia had become a trans-shipment point for illegal drugs going from the East to the West.

"We are conscious of the fact that Russia is increasingly becoming a route for drug traffickers," Pacey said, adding that policemen of both countries would closely cooperate to fight drug traffickers.

David Veness, Assistant Commissioner of London's Metropolitan Police, said at the same press conference that Britain's unarmed police force was particularly vulnerable to an influx of arms.

Britain is especially concerned to stem the flow of weapons, Veness said.