Articles Tagged with money laundering

C4D2A548-214B-41B2-8A08-026ECC3BD4F5-300x200Canada’s weak money-laundering laws, especially when it comes to real estate monitoring,  has left areas like British Columbia vulnerable as an attractive place to store ill-gotten cash. The main way this works is through buying real estate with little to no information to verify the identity of those involved in the purchasing. In 2018 alone, $5 billion was laundered through real estate in British Columbia.

Many proprietors of ill-gotten funds will often attempt to hide them by first mixing them with legitimate proceeds. This can include something like a business they operate. They then will transfer these funds into a bank, which are limited in how much information they can gather about the client’s day-to-day transactions. Finally, these funds are funneled into shell companies, or companies known to only be made for financial juggling, and then in some cases use those companies to buy up real estate in tax havens that will allow for tax breaks as well as the anonymity they require.

For these launderers, houses, condominium floors, and mansions can all act as a sort of bank account. While it may not be physically active money, they are assists in the form of bricks-and-mortars that keep their finances safe and sound. This system usually leaves a good portion of vacant properties, which naturally causes real estate prices to rise.

money launderingDeutsche Bank is facing legal action for its involvement in a $20 billion Russian money-laundering scheme, known as the Global Laundromat. Upon the announcement of these allegations, Deutsche Bank expressed its deep concern of “significant disciplinary action” in a confidential report by The Guardian.

According to the report, Deutsche Bank was found to be involved in an extensive scheme which was linked to criminals formerly involved with the Kremlin, as well as the KGB and FSB. The money-laundering scheme took place between 2010 and 2014 when an estimated $80 million was moved into western-based accounts. In order for Russian funds to make their way into the US and Europe, shell companies were used to create and send falsified loans back and forth to each other. Eventually, the shell companies would purposely default on the loan, allowing judges involved in the scandal to authenticate the debt. The billions of dollars in illegal funds were then routed to the desired accounts using the Deutsche Bank network.

However, according to the report, Deutsche Bank was unaware of its part in the global money laundering scheme until 2017 when The Guardian published their initial report. Today, Deutsche Bank not only faces the embarrassment of its unknown involvement but also risks diminishing its overall market value as investors continue to drop their shares given the reports of the scandal.

money laundering and terrorism financing The Cayman Islands, three islands located in the western Caribbean, lack the capacity to spot money laundering and terrorism financing. This is a major fault considering the Cayman’s role as an international financial center.

The Caribbean Financial Action Task Force (CFATF) took control over the evaluation of this region in 2017, when they visited the Cayman Islands to compile a report on the deficiencies. This report specifically analyzed how the Cayman Islands complied with 40 Financial Action Task Force standards in relation to combating money laundering and terrorism financing. The Cayman evaluation was discussed by the CFATF and Plenary was held in November of 2018 in Barbados and published by March of 2019. The CFATF found much during their evaluation of Cayman.

They discovered that while the Inter Agency Coordination Committee and the Anti-Money Laundering Steering Group are a strong combination, they could use more cooperation with law enforcement organizations and the Financial Reporting Authority.

money-laundering-300x200Two for the most popular apps for millennials and travelers are now being used to launder money for criminal elements. Airbnb and Uber are playing host to a new scheme that turns ill-gotten gains into clean and hard to track cash or cryptocurrency.

Money Laundering Scheme

Add Airbnb and Uber to the growing list of ways criminals are hiding money these days. Experts told CNBC that fake Uber drivers, questionable Airbnb hosts, and cryptocurrency specialists are being recruited via the dark web.

paradise papersThe Paradise Papers Offer a Glimpse of Ultra Rich Money Practices

Swirling around in the media and online is a leak of financial documents called The Paradise Papers. Within the terabits of information lies the documented offshore accounts of politicians, celebrities, multinational corporations and even royalty. There is something else buried in the data according to The Gateway—money laundering and tax evasion.

The Trail of Money

HSBC Holdings has settled allegations that the bank ignored red flags for years about money laundering and will pay over $1.9 billion to resolve all allegations made by the United States Government. The settlement will resolve multiple investigations by the Justice Department, Treasury and other agencies.  In addition, according to printed reports, the bank will admit violating the Bank Secrecy Act and Trading with The Enemy Act. The investigations focused on allegations that the bank was complicit in money laundering by drug cartels and other entities that the U.S. has barred from it’s financial system.  A probe by the Senate revealed that HSBC allowed suspicious money to be hidden in flows of bulk cash between the United States and Mexico and failed to halt transactions involving Iran and other entities subject to U.S. financial sanctions.