Yesterday, the PSP arrested 34 people on suspicion of being linked to a corruption scheme in the technical inspection of vehicles. The investigation, which began in 2017, had the collaboration of the Instituto da Mobilidade e dos Transportes (IMT) and covers at least seven inspection centers (CITV).
In addition to the IMT and inspection centres, a law firm is also among the 50 locations that, this Tuesday, were the target of home and non-home searches in the municipalities of Braga, Vila Verde, Vila Nova de Famalicão, Guimarães, Vizela, Fafe, Amarante, Lousada, Gondomar, Porto, Matosinhos, Valongo, Loures, Lisbon, Sintra, Azambuja, Vila Franca de Xira, Seixal, Palmela, Setúbal, Silves, Lagoa and Portimão.
"Evidence was collected that some suspects, de facto or de jure administrators of several CITV management companies, implemented a fraudulent scheme in centers that allowed vehicles to pass their inspection without noting the deficiencies that the vehicles presented and/or without adopting inspection procedures", says the PSP in a statement.
Other people who "may have facilitated the realization of some businesses and/or favoured these companies", are also under investigation.
At stake may be crimes of passive corruption for an illicit act, active corruption for an illicit act, and aggravated document falsification, "related to the technical inspection of vehicles".
In the statement, the PSP adds that this Hydra operation is the culmination of an investigation into three separate investigations opened in 2017, 2019 and 2020, initially directed by the Loures Criminal Investigation Squadron and later taken over by the Central Economic and Financial Crime Investigation Brigade of the Criminal Investigation Department of the National Directorate of the PSP.