French government concerned over potential money laundering with vineyard purchases

Tracfin report highlights money laundering In its annual money laundering report, France’s Traitement du Renseignement et Action Contre les Circuits Financiers Clandestins (“Tracfin“) expressed concern over money laundering risks associated with the sale of France’s most renowned wineries to investors from China, Hong Kong and Russia. The concern stems from the increase in suspicious transaction […]

Spanish lawyer convicted of money laundering in one of Europe’s biggest money laundering rings

Spanish lawyer Fernando del Valle, whom we wrote about here, was convicted of money laundering and sentenced to six years in prison and ordered to pay €3.4 million in fines. Authorities believe del Valle laundered up to €250 million through his law firm in Spain’s exclusive Marbella region. The case was one of the largest […]

Suspicious activity reports show increase in mortgage fraud in U.S.

Money laundering suspicious activity reports (SARs) filed with FinCEN, the U.S. financial intelligence unit, show a slight increase in mortgage fraud in the U.S. According to FinCEN’s third quarter 2010 mortgage report, “Mortgage Loan Fraud SAR Filings“, 9% of all SARs filed in the 2010 third quarter indicated mortgage loan fraud as a suspected activity, an […]

Quebec construction industry alleged to be laundering money

Organized crime has infiltrated every level of the construction industry in Québec, according to Yves Mercure, the head of the construction wing of the Fédération des travailleurs et travailleuses du Québec. During an interview with Radio-Canada in Montréal, Mr. Mercure said that organized crime  has infiltrated most major construction companies in Québec and the construction […]

Are realtors who merely post listings on MLS required to report to FINTRAC?

On September 30, 2010 one of the landmark abuse of dominance cases in Canada was settled after approximately four years of investigation by the federal Competition Bureau and negotiations with The Canadian Real Estate Association, one of the largest single industry trade associations in Canada. The Consent Agreement entered into between the Competition Bureau  and […]

Noriega extradited to France to face money laundering charges

Former Panamanian President Manuel Noriega was extradited to France from the U.S. on an extradition warrant to face charges that he laundered US$3.15 million in drug profits through transactions that included buying luxurious apartments in Paris. Noriega was in jail serving a sentence for multiple charges, including drug trafficking in the U.S. from 1990 to […]

3 arrested in US$9 million real estate fraud in San Francisco

Three men were arrested and charged in connection with real estate fraud and money laundering in San Francisco for allegedly forging real estate deeds to three luxury condominium at One Rincon Hill worth about US$7.5 million to gain legal control of the condominiums and borrowing US$2.2 million against the properties. Melvin Emerich, Kaushal Niroula and Jay Shah allegedly pretended to […]

Senate report says dirty money still entering U.S. – and there’s a Canadian connection

Dirty money entering the U.S. from foreign nationals The Senate Committee on Homeland Security & Governmental Affairs released a special money laundering report today that describes four case studies of foreign politically exposed persons (“PEP“) who laundered money in the U.S. without detection. Two of the case histories have a Canadian connection. The 330-page report, entitled […]

Housing boom in Kenya may be tied to Somali pirate trade

The housing boom in Kenya and dramatic increases in housing prices in Nairobi has prompted the Kenyan government to launch an investigation into property owned by foreigners according to a report by the Associated Press. The investigation is the result of allegations that Somali pirates are buying real estate in Kenya in record numbers with […]

Macau Court sentences whole family of government minister for money laundering infrastructure procurement

Government official had assets worth 57 times his salary The Collegial Bench of the Court of First Instance of Macau today sentenced a whole family for money laundering in connection with bribes over a government infrastructure project. The family members are related to Macau’s former Secretary for Transport and Public Works, Ao Man Long. Mr. […]