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Criminals don't stop at borders, and neither should the police. "The Team" portrays a group of European police officers fighting international crime throughout Europe. The series is written by specialists Peter Thorsboe and Mai Brostrøm (The Eagle, The Protectors) – names that guarantee well-grounded and vividly inventive cases with complex, stimulating characters."The Team" consists of forensics, legal and IT experts, along with profilers and psychologists; their cases take them to Europe's major cities. The series benefits from Europe's huge cultural diversity and is shot in original languages. It sheds light into the reality of today's organized crime, as well as into the fates behind the crimes. "The Team" sees to it that justice wins and the victims' dignity is restored.
Three prostitutes in Antwerp, Berlin and Copenhagen are found dead, all shot through their left eyes and a finger cut off – only hours after the Belgian Journalist Jean Louis Poquelin (Carlos Leal) visited them. Europol sets up a Joint Investigation Team under the lead of Harald Bjørn (Lars Mikkelsen) from Denmark, Jackie Mueller (Jasmin Gerat) from Germany und Alicia Verbeek (Veerle Baetens) from Belgium. What first appeared to be a brutal murder series by a single perpetrator soon becomes a much larger case, when the connection to the killing of a fourth woman six years ago is detected. And it seems that more lives are at stake. Many more. The investigation takes the Team all over Europe, soon facing the fight against a widespread criminal network.
The Lithuanian billionaire Marius Loukauskis (Nicholas Ofczarek) appears in connection to the case. Loukauskis is suspected to be the head of an internationally operating criminal network, a leader when it comes to human trafficking and forced labor. Loukauskis is top ranking on Europol's wish list, but so far has been legally untouchable. The famous German jazz singer Iris Gabler (Sunnyi Melles) offers a reward for information leading to the arrest of one of the prostitutes' murderers who turns out to be her daughter. While a strange connection between organized crime, German nobility and corruption in the Belgian police unravels, the team manages to find the journalist Jean Louis in Austria – nearly tortured to death in a villa that belongs to Loukauskis. The main suspect as a victim and a billionaire in the crosshairs – fits well. Too well?
It turns out journalist Jean Louis was working on a book about Loukauskis and his criminal business and interviewed the murdered prostitutes. They testifi ed against Loukauskis – perhaps the reason why they were killed and Jean Louis was tortured. All of his material is stored on a password-protected web server, but Jean Louis himself is not cooperating with the police. And strangely, information about the old case six years ago got "lost" in the Belgian police department. When Alicia's superior, investigative judge Stéphane Pernel surprisingly attempts suicide, the investigation is knocked back to square one – the only lead now is Theo Janke, the pimp of jazz singer Iris Gabler's daughter Maria. Evidence shows that he must have been the one who killed Maria. But Janke is gone and when the team finally finds him, they find a mess.
Pimp Theo Janke and his daughter are found shot to death. The net gets tighter around billionaire Loukauskis when the trace of the two murders leads to Bruno Koopman, Loukauskis' personal security chief. Harald gets in touch with an undercover agent working inside Loukauskis' organization – it seems that Loukauskis' ex wife Dahlia and Bruno were plotting against Loukauskis ever since she was cheated out of loads of money after the divorce. Reopening an old murder case, getting testimonies from the prostitutes, killing them right away and pinpointing the murders on Loukauskis – must have been a divorce from hell! But the puzzle doesn't add up that easy. The missing piece could be found in a phone conversation between the prostitute Maria and her mother, singer Iris Gabler, right before Maria was killed. Jackie tries to confront her, not knowing she's about to tap in a deadly trap.
On her way to meeting Iris Gabler, Jackie gets attacked and shot by a masked man. She is badly wounded but can survive in hospital in Berlin. Harald and Alicia come to Berlin, but all they find is closed doors. No indication of the shooter, no trace whatsoever, even nothing leading to Loukauskis or his entourage. Until, for the first time, a carefully hidden side of Loukauskis' business comes to light when the source of a spreading salmonella scandal in Denmark is detected: A chicken farm in a deserted area in the Danish countryside where illegal immigrants from Eastern Europe are forced to work under inhuman conditions. Finally something to build up a case! The Danish police is about to make a raid, but somebody was faster destroying evidence in a most shocking way.
When the Danish police arrive at the illegal chicken farm, the building is burning brightly. Many of the forced laborers who were locked up there died in the flames. Survivors leave no doubt: this was modern slavery at its worst. But most evidence is lost in the flames so the only key to nailing Loukauskis is buried in Jean Louis' material. But Jean Louis seems to have lost his mind suffering from post-traumatic stress after having been tortured. Everything Alicia can get out of him is a love poem he recites. A sign? A key? A hidden message? Or just nonsense? When the team gets hold of the phone conversation between prostitute Maria and her mother Iris Gabler that Jackie was about to confront the jazz singer with, the missing connection between the killed prostitutes, Loukauskis' "business" and the murder attempt on Jackie comes to light. Finally, they have something in their hands to go after Loukauskis. But when they fi nally get access to Jean Louis' material on Loukauskis, the shocking news is that they just scratched on the tip of the iceberg.
Loukauskis slipped away. But at least the team can put an international arrest warrant on him as they found evidence that he raped Maria, Iris Gabler's daughter, when she was 14. Meanwhile, it proves that Jean Louis didn't become insane at all. He is following his own agenda of destroying Loukauskis. In a secret Skype conversation he tries to get confessions out of him, but Loukauskis took precautions so Jean Louis won't get away alive a second time. While Jackie and Harald get a grip on Loukauskis' whereabouts, Alicia is facing a huge private nightmare.
The more the team learns about Loukauskis' methods of putting trafficked people into forced labor, the more it becomes obvious how effective his organization works. He can just disappear in an instant, so again they can't get to him. But the more the police learn about his business, the easier it becomes to cut him off his entourage and narrow down Loukauskis' options of hiding. Until finally, an abandoned factory in the Belgian countryside is left. While Alicia and Harald go to get him, Jackie finds Loukauskis' ex wife Dahlia murdered in her garden. The final act of the divorce from hell? When Jackie fi nds out the truth about Dahlia's death, it all falls into place. Meanwhile, Alicia and Harald arrive at the Belgian factory and face a human catastrophe as the factory obviously was full of mistreated female slaves sewing fake brand clothes for the black market. No sign of Loukauskis whatsoever. If they want to nail him before he leaves the continent, they've got only one shot left.
Carlos Leal(Jean-Louis Poquelin)
Lars Mikkelsen(Harald Bjørn)
Veerle Baetens(Alicia Verbeeck)
Filip Peeters(Bruno Koopmann)
Miriam Stein(Natascha Stark)
Hilde Van Mieghem(Stéphane Pernel)
Koen De Bouw(Frank Aers)
Alexandra Rapaport(Liv Eriksen)
Nadeshda Brennicke(Dahlia Loukauskis)
Sunnyi Melles(Iris Gabler)
Nicholas Ofczarek(Marius Loukauskis)
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