Exclusive: Italy tax police search five banks in diamond sales probe – sources

MILAN Italian tax police seized documents from the offices of five Italian lenders on Wednesday in an investigation over alleged fraud in relation to the distribution of diamonds to bank clients, sources said.

The police took documents and computer files from Intesa Sanpaolo, UniCredit, Monte dei Paschi di Siena, Banco BPM and Popolare di Bari, the sources said. All five banks declined to comment.

Diamond brokers have been using Italian banks to sell high-quality investment diamonds in a business that totaled at least 300 million euros in sales in 2015, according to broker data.

(Reporting by Valentina Za, Gianluca Semeraro and Andrea Mandala, editing by Mark Bendeich)