Police seize ILVA assets across 24 Italian cities

Real estate, funds, company stakes and vehicles confiscated

Police seize ILVA assets across 24 Italian cities

Taranto, September 11 - Finance police seized more than 914 million euros of assets from the Riva Group, the same holding company responsible for the troubled ILVA steel mill in the southern Italian port city of Taranto, investigators said on Wednesday. The Riva Group holding company owns ILVA, the biggest iron and steel producer in Italy, the fourth-biggest in Europe and the 23rd-biggest in the world. Italian Police on Tuesday oversaw the confiscation of business and real estate assets from 13 companies belonging to the Riva Group in 24 cities across Italy, including Milan, Genoa, Rome, Verona, Parma, Taranto and Naples. Police took control of 456 million euros worth of real estate assets, 45 million euros worth of funds, company stakes worth 415 million euros, and roughly 100 vehicles. The seizures were ordered by Taranto judge Patrizia Todisco in the probe against ILVA top management for criminal association aimed at environmental disaster. ILVA has been at the centre of a political and legal battle since July 2012 when the same court ordered the partial closure of the Taranto plant due to serious health concerns. A decree to save it while working to make sure it stops polluting passed in the Senate last month. The decree, among other things, designates a group of experts to oversee clean-up of the Taranto steel plant. Last month prosecutors asked the courts to indict Emilio Riva, Riva Group co-founder and ILVA's former head, on charges of massive tax fraud. Milan prosecutor Francesco Greco accused Riva, and two other former executives of the steelmaker, of allegedly evading 52 million euros in taxes dating back to 2007.

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