Article: Five ways Biden could crack down on dirty money and financial secrecy

Article - Academic, Publications

Five ways Biden could crack down on dirty money and financial secrecy

Brenda Medina, 01 April 2021

Early rhetoric from the Biden administration has encouraged anti-corruption advocates that the new president’s tenure in the White House may mark a turning point in the fight against dirty money and tax haven abuse — two overlapping problems made worse by a veil of secrecy that shields vast sums of money from tax collectors and law enforcement authorities.

“We will crack down on tax havens and illicit financing that contribute to income inequality, fund terrorism, and generate pernicious foreign influence,” the administration’s Interim National Security Strategic Guidance, released last month, says, identifying the fight against global corruption as a top security priority. The strategy mirrors promises Joe Biden made during his candidacy.

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Article: JPMorgan allegedly helped Russian mafia launder funds – FinCEN leak

Article - Media, Publications

JPMorgan allegedly helped Russian mafia launder funds – FinCEN leak

Stephen Rae, 20 September 2020

The FinCEN Files leak show JP Morgan in London was suspected of helping Russian mafia ‘capo di capi’ or boss of bosses to launder more than a $1BN.

Semion Mogilevich – who has appeared in the FBI’s 10 Most Wanted list – has been accused of crimes including murder, drugs smuggling and gun running.

Given his background he should not have been allowed to use the financial system, but a SARs filed by JP Morgan in 2015 after the account was closed, reveals how the bank’s London office may have moved some of the cash.

The FinCen Files is a data dump leak of internal US Treasury Department documents which apparently show how major banks allowed criminal suspects to launder dirty money around the globe. Notably, the leak shows London is often the weak link in the financial system and how London is awash with Russian cash.

The leak of documents from the Treasury Department show how JP Morgan, provided banking services to a secretive offshore company called ABSI Enterprises between 2002 and 2013, even though the firm’s ownership was not clear from the bank’s records, the BBC reported.

Over one five-year period, JP Morgan sent and received wire transfers totalling $1.02bn, the broadcaster revealed.

The bank’s SAR noted ABSI’s parent company “might be associated with Semion Mogilevich – an individual who was on the FBI’s top 10 most wanted list”.

In a statement to the BBC, JP Morgan said: “We follow all laws and regulations in support of the government’s work to combat financial crimes. We devote thousands of people and hundreds of millions of dollars to this important work.”

The files were obtained by BuzzFeed News which shared them with the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ) – image above from www.ICIJ.org – and 400 journalists around the world. The Panorama investigation programme led research for the BBC.

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