French concrete giant LafargeHolcim is under intense scrutiny after an investigation has claimed the company paid Islamic State half a million dollars to keep its Syrian operations afloat.
According to an investigation by French magazine Le Canard Enchaîné, the French concrete company is said to have paid the terror group $509,694 from July 2012 to September of 2014 and to have paid a total of $5.56 million in “donations” to other armed groups in the region.
The satirical magazine, who also broke the “fake jobs” scandal of former presidential candidate François Fillon, said the information came from a 2017 report by auditors PwC and consulting firm Baker McKenzie, L’Express reports.
The revelations have caused Paris prosecutors to announce a formal investigation into the matter earlier this year raising potential charges of financing terrorist groups.
Baker McKenzie’s report also claims the upper management of the company likely had full knowledge of the situation and the paying of monies to the terror group.
In an email dated September 14th, safety director of LafargeHolcim Jean-Claude Veillard mentioned the prosecutors questioning the company’s legal director. “I nevertheless pointed out to her that she was a member of the safety committee and that I have been talking about these subjects for almost three years. now,” he said.
On the 14th and 15th of this month, the headquarters for the company in Paris was also raided by police.
The incident is not the first time the Islamic State has been funded directly or indirectly by Europeans. A report from earlier this year showed that Islamic state fighters from Sweden were still able to claim welfare benefits despite having left the country to fight for the terror group.
Several individuals have also been arrested over links to the terror group and many have also attempted to raise funds to support jihadists in Syria and Iraq. German radical Islamist preacher Sven Lau was found guilty earlier this year of providing jihadist groups with money and equipment and sentenced to five and a half years in prison.