Altice co-founder Armando Pereira has been detained following a search of his home in Vieira do Minho, Braga.
The investigation – which involves suspicions of corruption, tax fraud, and money laundering – also resulted in the arrest of two other individuals.
Authorities conducted searches at various locations, including the former headquarters of Portugal Telecom (PT) – which became Altice Portugal in 2018 – in Lisbon, as well as the residence of Hernâni Vaz Antunes, a key figure in the company.
The allegations suggest that Pereira – with the assistance of third parties – engaged in fraudulent real estate transactions and concealed profits from the sale of assets, including former PT properties.
One specific transaction under scrutiny involves the sale of four buildings in Lisbon for €15 million. However, investigators believe that this case represents only the tip of the iceberg, with illicit gains potentially exceeding €250 million.
The extensive operation involved more than 100 agents from the Public Security Police (PSP) and nearly 50 vehicles. The Central Department of Investigation and Prosecution (DCIAP) confirmed that numerous steps were taken across different regions of the country as part of the investigation.
Altice is a significant telecoms player with operations spanning several countries. The allegations of corruption, tax fraud, and money laundering have raised concerns about the company’s integrity and potential damage to its reputation. Altice’s shares have already experienced a decline in response to the news, reflecting investor unease.
The investigation is focused on gathering evidence to substantiate the allegations of a fraudulent scheme that reportedly inflicted substantial financial harm on Altice, potentially amounting to millions of euros. The authorities are searching for documents and other crucial evidence that will support their case.
Armando Pereira is currently being held in the prison attached to the Polícia Judiciária in Lisbon and is scheduled to appear before a judge on Friday. The legal proceedings will provide an opportunity for the judge to review the evidence and determine the course of action.
As the investigation unfolds, it remains to be seen how these developments will impact Altice and its operations. The company may face legal and financial consequences if the allegations are proven true.
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