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Chicago scrapyard investigation continues

Aug 28, 2013 | 05:53 PM | Lisa Gordon

Tags  Chicago yards, scrapyards, scrapyard raid, scrapyard investigation, IRS probe, Acme Refining, Serlin Iron & Metal, U.S. Attorney's Occive Lisa Gordon

NEW YORK — The federal probe of Chicago-area scrapyards and suppliers is in full tilt, although investigating agencies are unable to provide further verification or updates on the matter.

The raids of two metal recyclers’ operations last week confirmed speculation that a large-scale investigation was under way. It has been estimated that as many as 20 scrap companies and 100 suppliers might be involved.

The headquarters of Acme Refining Corp. and Serlin Iron & Metal Co. both fielded visits from the U.S. Attorney’s Office and the Internal Revenue Service criminal division (, Aug. 23).

Investigators have told AMM that they can provide no further comment on the matter.

Three other metals recycling companies were allegedly raided a few months prior to Acme and Serlin, but the the U.S. Attorney’s Office declined to verify its presence at the raids or the names of the companies. The IRS’ criminal division also declined to comment further.

"We can neither confirm nor deny our presence," a spokeswoman for the IRS said.

Meanwhile, there is no time frame on when public documents will become available. "The search warrant applications are sealed and any court documents would be filed in U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois, but there are no public court documents as there are no charges pending," the Attorney’s Office spokesman said earlier in the week.

The cause of the investigation hasn’t been confirmed. According to the IRS’ website, it’s investigations into whether or not a taxpayer willfully attempted to hide income from the Federal government are an integral part of proving other criminal activity including fraud, money laundering or Bank Secrecy Act violations.

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