(Reuters) - Chinese police have busted the country's biggest underground banking cases involving transactions totaling 410 billion yuan ($64.24 billion), the official Xinhua news agency said on Thursday, part of a drive to combat money laundering.
Police from China's eastern Zhejiang province have detained about 100 suspects from eight gangs since they launched an investigation in September last year, Xinhua said.
The gangs were linked to a ringleader who operated dozens of shell companies in Hong Kong that were involved in foreign exchange transactions and money laundering, it said.
China said in August it would launch a three-month crackdown on underground banking as an economic slowdown and market volatility have sparked a wave of capital outflows this year.
Underground banking presents an increasingly complex threat to China's financial security, encompassing issues from financing for drugs and terrorism to tax fraud, the Ministry of Public Security said earlier this year.
(Reporting by Lee Chyen Yee in Singapore; Editing by Gareth Jones)