People don’t typically think of the common money laundering indicia when searching for hidden assets the subject of a: divorce; bankruptcy; commercial collection or other legal proceeding. Such indicia can be effectively used as part of an asset search / recovery effort even in situations where there is no money laundering. In the United States, the indicia or red flags of money laundering are described at Appendix “F” of the Bank Secrecy Act / Anti-Money Laundering Examination Manual. They are also described in Money Laundering Prevention, A Money Services Business Guide, at pages 16-24.
Money laundering indicia are sometimes used outside of the United States. For example, India’s Financial Intelligence Unit relies on “broad categories of reason for suspicion“; the Belgian Financial Intelligence Unit (“CTIF-CFI”) uses Money Laundering Indicators; the Swiss Federal Banking Commission has the Schedule: Indicators of Money Laundering ; and the Asia / Pacific Group on Money Laundering also uses such a list. Recognizing the following money laundering indicia may however, lead to the discovery of assets concealed in a divorce, commercial collection, bankruptcy or other legal case:
- Asset Protection Via Nevada, Wyoming or Delaware.
- Large Amounts Of Portable Valuable Commodities (Gold, Diamonds, etc.).
- False Invoicing In A Trade Or Business.
- Offshore Asset Protection Services.
- Foreign / Offshore Bank Accounts.
- Multiple Jurisdictions.
- Fraudulent Asset Transfers / Conveyances.
- Shell Companies.
- Sham Trusts.
- Nominees (i.e. Intermediaries).
- High-Risk Geographical Locations.
- Bearer Shares.
- Informal Banking Systems, (Hawala, Hui Kuan, etc.).
- Bulk-Cash Smuggling.
- Internet Or Other Gambling Activities.
- Structuring Bank Deposits, (a.k.a. “Smurfing”).
- Offshore Credit Cards.
- Misuse Of Businesses (i.e. Commingling Personal With Business Assets).
(Last Edited 10/12/11)
Copyright 2007- 2013 Fred L. Abrams