Aurubis AG supports authorities in investigation into organized theft ring
Hamburg | Thursday, June 15, 2023
Initial findings indicate that Aurubis AG, a leading global supplier of non-ferrous metals, has been the target of past criminal activities. The Hamburg Public Prosecutor's Office and police are investigating individual active and former Aurubis employees and respectively outside company employees working at the Aurubis plant site. No accusations have been directed against Aurubis. The company has given the Public Prosecutor's Office and the police its full support for several years, and welcomes the extensive investigations aimed at identifying those behind these crimes.
Several Aurubis employee workspaces and the on-site offices of contractors at the Hamburg site were searched this morning as part of the investigation. The Public Prosecutor's Office and police are investigating a suspected theft ring targeting precious metal-bearing intermediate products generated from Aurubis’ production processes. The public prosecutor's office was able to obtain arrest warrants amounting to over €20 million. The amount of the damages ultimately incurred by Aurubis is the subject of the investigation. According to current findings, Aurubis can rule out any harm to suppliers or customers.
"As a company involved in processing precious metals, we are fundamentally at risk of becoming the focus of criminal activity. We therefore have the high prevention and security standards in place. Nevertheless, we have taken this incident as an opportunity to thoroughly analyze and revise these standards once again. We have immediately implemented some initial measures that will significantly increase our previous safety level, especially in view of the current situation," says Heiko Arnold, COO Custom Smelting and Products at Aurubis AG.
And while the Aurubis team is troubled that employees are suspected of having harmed their own company, Aurubis management's trust in our workforce remains steadfast. We know that our employees have integrity and are committed to our Code of Conduct. We are taking a strong stand against these individual cases of criminal activity.
In addition to high prevention and safety standards customary in the industry for all production processes at Aurubis involving high-value materials, the company also employs established instruments to detect incidents of this type. These include an effective whistleblower system for people both inside and outside the company and dedicated audits for all persons working in areas involving high-value materials.
Aurubis has immediately released the affected employees and banned the accused third-party employees from the plant. Some of the suspects were arrested and are now in custody.
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