Montenegrin president linked with Albanian tycoon on money laundering

The president of Montenegro, Milo Djukanovic has turned down the latest claims over his alleged connection to Albanian businessman wanted for money laundering, Rezart Taci.
Taci is wanted over suspicions he is involved in an international money laundering scheme.
Wiretaps published in Albanian medAC over the last days suggested Taci had involved Djukanovic in the transfer of money to Prva Bank.
The bank is owned by Aco Djukanovic, the brother of the president. Earlier this week, an Albanian organized crime court accused Taci and his accomplices of using foreign banks to launder some 18 million euros to avoid being seized in Italy. The prosecution said those involved in helping launder the money received kickbacks.
Djukanovic denied the claims during a press conference in Cetinje last Friday.
“It is a completely fabricated affair. I don’t know who the people are, nor have I had contact with them in any way … this is a complete forgery, but these forgeries have become a kind of practice in political life in Montenegro.”
Prva Bank also denied the claims and said the media is just trying to damage the bank and its shareholders.
Concerns about the bank and money laundering have been raised since 2016 when the European Parliament asked Montenegro to investigate and prosecute high-level corruption, including at the bank.
The Montenegrin prosecution confirmed they had opened an investigation into the case.
Meantime the Albanian wanted tycoon, Taci told Top Channel TV speaking from the Italian city of Milan, where he is on the run he would face Albanian justice, but in Albania, according to him, there is a lobby to attack entrepreneurs.
In 2018, a Tirana court ruled that Taci was not guilty of tax evasion to the tune of EUR 8 million, relating to the company ARMO between 2008 and 2013.
He purchased the oil refining company in 2008 before selling it just five years later due to outstanding bank loans.
The Prosecution Office launched another investigation into him for fraud, falsification of documents, and theft from a foreign supplier to the tune of EUR 20 million, but this case was eventually closed.
For his part Djukanovic, who is also the leader of the opposition in Montenegro, has said he supports “every initiative” to remove the current government.
“It is clear to you that we will support any initiative for its removal, it is clear to you that it should have been done yesterday, and not a few days later,” he said at the same press conference.
The party Djukanovic leads, the DPS, was the strongest in the 2020 elections but could not form a coalition. He said an initiative to remove the government would be announced in the coming days.
It's to be seen how the probe into the case will proceed because of the status of President Djukanovic and Taci who is an Albanian citizen who is wanted. /argumentum.al