A gruesome murder for $70

It was 1998. Wesley Ira Purkey was an ex-con recently out on parole and living in Lansing, Kansas. He had a lengthy criminal record for numerous violent crimes and had spent years in prison getting an education, and trying to improve his attitude for release. Over the years, prison psychologists who evaluated Purkey labeled him […]

Growing risks for AML compliance officers – client threats, intimidation and expanding personal liability

Threats and intimidation The story of how two reporters in London investigating the FinTech Wirecard were pursued by a government regulator in Germany, which commenced a bogus criminal investigation against them, and how those reporters were followed and intimidated by Wirecard and its lawyers, is reminiscent of what can happen to anti-money laundering (“AML“) compliance […]

UK Appeal Court rules that complying with some US MLATs to hand over evidence in an investigation is unlawful; relevant for Canada as well

Cruel and unusual punishment Everything I know about the Eighth Amendment and death penalty jurisprudence, I learned from former US Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy, from whom I had the privilege of studying law during a course on international human rights and constitutional law. US Supreme Court Justice Kennedy, as he was then, was not […]

Mexico’s FIU freezes bank accounts used to launder money of 1,937 suspected CJNG cartel members and their lawyers, while 5 cartels continue turf wars to export fentanyl to US and Canada

Mexico’s financial intelligence unit, working with the DEA, yesterday announced that it had frozen the bank accounts of 1,770 men and women and 167 companies believed to be tied to, or working for, the Cártel Jalisco Nueva Generación (“CJNG“), believed to have been used to launder approximately US$1.1 billion in proceeds of crime from the […]

Proceeds of crime from US$550 million Ponzi scheme run by “obscenely greedy con artists”, including diamonds, gold coins, sports memorabilia, art, comic books, go on sale at online auction next week as Covid-19 solution

The proceeds of crime from a massive US$550 million Ponzi scheme perpetrated by two convicted fraudsters in the US – Kevin Merrill and Jay Ledford – are being auctioned at an online auction house starting next week, in part because of Covid-19. Diamonds, sports memorabilia, art, gold coins, comic book from securities fraud being sold […]

A lawyer like no other: Albert Battel, the Nazi lawyer who defied the SS to save Polish Jews from an extermination camp

Almost three years after the German Army invaded Poland, the Nazis started to implement the final solution in Poland, and in 1942, established the first of many extermination camps in which millions of Jews would perish. One of those camps was Bełżec. In the midst of those 1942 mass deportations of Polish Jews to extermination camps, […]

US unseals money laundering indictment against owner of Bitcoin mixing service that was used by Canadian darknet site

Indictment for mixing service On February 13, 2020, the US government unsealed an indictment against Larry Dean Harmon, the alleged founder of a Bitcoin mixing Bitcoin service, and of a darknet search engine that hooked up with the now-defunct illegal Canadian darknet site called AlphaBay. The mixing service was called Helix and the darknet search […]

UK Bitcoin drug dealer who imported illegal drugs from Canada on the darknet, sentenced to 8 years in jail

A UK man, Paul Johnson, was sentenced to eight years in jail in the UK for operating a darknet drug trafficking business from the attic of his home. In order to obfuscate what he was doing, he set up a company called “Labrador Tea Company” and used it to buy illegal drugs from Canadians in […]

Narcos Canada: Canadian banks & professions deal with significant proceeds of crime from narco trafficking and serious crimes; Canada listed again as “major money laundering country”; plus 10 money laundering areas of concern identified by the US for Canada

Canada still on the Majors List Canada made it on the “Majors List” in the annual US State Department’s International Narcotics Control Strategy Report (“INCSR“) again this year. The Majors List is three lists and it designates countries that are (1) “Major Illicit Drug Producing and Drug Transit Countries”; (2) “Major Precursor Chemical Source Countries”; […]