US amends anti-money laundering law for beneficial ownership after Panama Papers, including to detect purchases of expensive real estate with illicit money

Panama Papers Driven Changes The US Treasury has announced several amendments, and proposed legislative amendments, to its anti-money laundering (“AML“) legislation in the wake of the Panama Papers scandal to tackle the disclosure of what is called “beneficial ownership.” Beneficial ownership means the beneficial, as opposed to the legal, owner of shares of a private [...]

New US law brands journalists and humanitarian aid workers as terrorist risk

In this story in Quartz, we explore how a new US law, HR158, the Visa Waiver Program Improvement Amendment Act 2015, will result in journalists and humanitarian aid works, and many others being branded a terrorist risk for visiting Iraq, Syria, Iran and the Sudan, and how the new law will affect the ability of [...]

Is there a terrorism risk for Canada in accepting 25,000 refugees?

Terrorist risks for refugees There appears to be a debate that has the potential to escalate in this country in respect of whether there are risks for Canada in taking in 25,000 Syrian refugees. No decision is ever risk-free. The decision to accept Syrian refugee is no different – it is not risk free. But [...]

Developer sued for taking proceeds of crime from foreign nationals

New York real estate developer being sued for $18 billion for accepting alleged proceeds of corruption from foreigners who were known PEPs According to an article yesterday in the Wall Street Journal, real estate developers in New York are being sued for accepting proceeds of corruption from politically exposed persons (PEP). The plaintiffs are the [...]

UN Chief charged in money laundering bribery scheme for allegedly accepting millions in cash from Chinese casino billionaire

Former UN President Charged The former United Nations (“UN”) President of the UN General Assembly, John Ashe, the UN Deputy Ambassador, Francis Lorenzo, a Chinese foreign national billionaire, Ng Lap Seng (also known as David Ng) and two of his associates were charged in New York with various offenses over an alleged bribery scheme. Two defendants [...]

Structuring – How Moving Funds from China to Vancouver Often Mirrors How Columbian Drug Lords Move their Money

How is Some Money Moved from China? Often with Smurfs and Structuring. I am often asked how Chinese foreign nationals who have immigrated to the US, China, or EU, or are attempting to, move millions of dollars in funds to other countries unimpeded when there are Chinese  banking regulations (commonly called currency controls) that prohibit [...]

Nigeria says US$150 billion stolen from state coffers in 10 years by politically exposed persons

Whopping $150 Billion Stolen from Nigeria in 10 Years Nigeria’s new President, Muhammadu Buhari, today said that the government believes that its officials have stolen approximately US$150 billion from the state in the past ten years.  In anti-money laundering law, high ranking government officials with access to state property and assets are politically exposed persons (“PEP“). [...]

In 2015, more countries become terrorist hotspots; Canada moves up ranks to become 35th in terrorism threat index; US moves up to 17th place

US and Canada move up on the terrorism threat index 2014 and thus far in 2015, have been marked by a dramatic increase in terrorist incidents and in the number of countries that have been pulled into terrorist activity and for which financial institutions have been used for terrorist financing. Western countries are becoming less [...]

China and US agree to cooperate to help China track down & repatriate “economic fugitives”

Late last week, at a meeting in Beijing, the US and China agreed to continue cooperating in the removal of Chinese foreign nationals from the US who are suspected of having immigrated with proceeds of corruption. The meeting took place between Meng Jianzhu, Secretary of the Central Politics and Law Commission, and national police chief Guo Shengkun, [...]