The Supreme Court of Finland adjudged on Friday that five investors involved in the WinCapita case, the country's biggest ever financial fraud, must hand in the ill-gotten-gains from the scheme to the country.
The WinCapita club was a Finnish Internet-based Ponzi scheme, which advertized itself as a private investment club engaged in currency trading. It operated mainly in Finland, with a smaller number of members in Sweden during 2005 and 2008.
The operation collected about 100 million euros (126 million U.S. dollars) from over 10,000 investors and was considered the largest ever swindle in Finland.
The National Bureau of Investigation of Finland (NBI) began to investigate the case in March 2008. The chief suspect Hannu Kailajärvi was sentenced to 5 years' imprisonment by the Court of Appeal of Helsinki in February 2013.
The Supreme Court ruled on Friday that all the illegal money gained from criminal activities by five criminal offenders must be confiscated, reported Finnish media.
In addition, the court upheld a verdict handed down by the Vantaa District Court in August this year, which adjudged that those defendants, who were found no criminal intent and exempted from fraud charges, must also hand in their illegal proceeds.
The Supreme court said that hundreds of similar cases are being prosecuted, and Friday's decision on WinCapita will be applied to the ongoing cases.