The smuggling of rhinoceros horns to China

The prosecution of wildlife smuggling is rare and especially if it involves a Canadian. But last year, Xiao Ju Gian, was sentenced in New York for 30 months incarceration for smuggling rhinoceros horns, elephant ivory and coral from the US into Vancouver, from which he abused the Canadian financial system. Xiao Guan lived in Richmond, [...]

Trial of PEP from Equatorial Guinea for money laundering in France; are Canada’s PEPs from Gabon next?

Equatorial Guinea trial Teodorin Obiang, the son of the President of Equatorial Guinea, is being prosecuted in France for allegedly laundering the proceeds of corruption in France. Mr. Obiang is also the Vice-President of Equatorial Guinea and is a politically exposed person. His trial is scheduled for June 2017. He is accused of bringing $105 [...]

Does privilege really prevent lawyers from reporting money laundering?

In Canada and the US, lawyers are not subject to anti-money laundering reporting obligations like they are in most other countries. One of the most frequent reasons given for this by lawyers is that to require us to report certain financial transactions to a financial intelligence unit is inconsistent with, and would undermine, legal privilege. [...]

US expands review of money laundering in real estate market

More scrutiny in US for real estate The Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) announced that it is expanding its program to identify persons who may be hiding assets in residential properties in the US. The expansion adds additional cities to what are called the area for Geographic Targeting Orders (GTO). Title insurance agents in GTO cities [...]

The $200 million a year refugee smuggling operation in Libya

A $200 million a year business and growing  The EU – Turkey deal to close the borders of the EU to refugees and migrants has shifted the human smuggling routes back to Libya. The focus back to Libya means ISIS’ large source of terrorist financing from this activity is flowing again, which may also facilitate [...]

‘Twitter terrorist’ a danger, says panel at ACAMS Conference

The Lawyers Weekly has a good story covering the ACAMS Conference in Toronto’s panel on terrorist financing in which we participated with FINTRAC, Standard Chartered and the OPP to discuss the risks and issues of terrorism threats in Canada. The article, available here, discusses Ontario and security concerns, as well as how FINTRAC deals with [...]

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 [...]

The FIFA scandal and why banks may be facing regulatory issues over KYC failures

FIFA Indictment against PEPs The 47-count Indictment against 14 persons employed or engaged by FIFA by the US District Court for the Eastern District of New York (“EDNY“), and their arrest may do more than shake up international soccer – it also has the potential to result in significant fines against many global banks who processed [...]

ISIS confirmed it is sending defectors back home to the West with instructions to commit terrorist acts

ISIS  sending defectors back home According to the popular website “Raqqa is Being Slaughtered Silently” written by people who oppose the Islamic State (“ISIS“) living in ar Raqqa, Syria, a town occupied by ISIS, ISIS is starting a campaign to send defectors back home to places like Canada, the UK, France and the US to [...]

Arrest of the Queen of ISIS sheds light on terrorist financing through Lebanese charities for refugees

According to an article in the Washington Post, the arrest of Saja Hamid al Dulaimi, the ex-wife of the leader of the Islamic State, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, has shed light on terrorist financing methods used by ISIS in Lebanon. The Queen of ISIS was arrested in November 2014, attempting to enter Lebanon with her daughter, who [...]