Drug Dollars in American Politics
Global Banks: Money Laundering
Crime Money in US Politics - Global
The Federal Reserve and the big banks fought for more than two years to keep details of the largest bailout in U.S. history a secret. Now, the rest of the world can see what it was missing. The Fed didn’t tell anyone which banks were in trouble so deep they required a combined $1.2 trillion on Dec. 5, 2008, their single neediest day. Bankers didn’t mention that they took tens of billions of dollars in emergency loans at the same time they were assuring investors their firms were healthy. And no one calculated until now that banks reaped an estimated $13 billion of income by taking advantage of the Fed’s below-market rates, Bloomberg Markets magazine reports in its January issue.
Drugs money worth billions of dollars kept the financial system afloat at the height of the global crisis, the United Nations ' drugs and crime tsar has told the Observer . Antonio Maria Costa, head of the UN Office on Drugs and Crime, said he has seen evidence that the proceeds of organised crime were "the only liquid investment capital" available to some banks on the brink of collapse last year. He said that a majority of the $352bn (£216bn) of drugs profits was absorbed into the economic system as a result. This will raise questions about crime's influence on the economic system at times of crisis. It will also prompt further examination of the banking sector as world leaders, including Barack Obama and Gordon Brown, call for new International Monetary Fund regulations. Speaking from his office in Vienna, Costa said evidence that illegal money was being absorbed into the financial system was first drawn to his attention by intelligence agencies and prosecutors around 18 months ago.
The vast profits made from drug production and trafficking are overwhelmingly reaped in rich "consuming" countries – principally across Europe and in the US – rather than war-torn "producing" nations such as Colombia and Mexico , new research has revealed. And its authors claim that financial regulators in the west are reluctant to go after western banks in pursuit of the massive amount of drug money being laundered through their systems.
On 10 April 2006, a DC-9 jet landed in the port city of Ciudad del Carmen, on the Gulf of Mexico , as the sun was setting. Mexican soldiers, waiting to intercept it, found 128 cases packed with 5.7 tons of cocaine, valued at $100m. But something else – more important and far-reaching – was discovered in the paper trail behind the purchase of the plane by the Sinaloa narco-trafficking cartel. During a 22-month investigation by agents from the US Drug Enforcement Administration, the Internal Revenue Service and others, it emerged that the cocaine smugglers had bought the plane with money they had laundered through one of the biggest banks in the United States : Wachovia, now part of the giant Wells Fargo. The authorities uncovered billions of dollars in wire transfers, traveller's cheques and cash shipments through Mexican exchanges into Wachovia accounts. Wachovia was put under immediate investigation for failing to maintain an effective anti-money laundering programme.
The bank, now a unit of Wells Fargo, leads a list of firms that have moved dirty money for Mexico’s narcotics cartels--helping a $39 billion trade that has killed more than 22,000 people since 2006.
The sanctions, outlined in an executive order signed Sunday by , are aimed at the Zetas, a Mexican drug ring linked to multiple killings; the Yakuza, ’s widespread mob army; the Camorra, a crime network based in southern ; and the Brothers’ Circle, an Eastern European criminal group operating worldwide. The order freezes the groups’ assets, blocks them from holding interest in American property, authorizes financial sanctions against anyone aiding them and bars their members from entering the United States. The new moves, announced by Attorney General Eric H.
Rarely in the history of Japan Inc. has there been a more remarkable board meeting. On Nov. 25, the directors of Olympus Corp. gathered at their Tokyo headquarters, their company under siege. Once a solid international brand, a maker of cameras and medical equipment, the company is now at the center of a global investigation as to whether, and to what extent, its top management was involved in funneling billions of dollars in allegedly illicit payments to offshore accounts. Investigators believe those payments, made for over a decade, may have mostly ended up in the hands of organized criminal groups in Japan.
Just hours after the death of Border Patrol agent Brian Terry, federal officials tried to cover up evidence that the gun that killed Terry was one the government intentionally helped sell to the Mexican cartels in a weapons trafficking program known as Operation Fast and Furious. The revelation comes just days after a huge shake-up of government officials who oversaw the failed anti-gun trafficking program and Congress renewed its demand for more answers. Also late Thursday, Sen. Charles Grassley's office revealed that 31 more Fast and Furious guns have been found at 12 violent crime scenes in Mexico . In an internal email the day after Terry's murder, Assistant U.S. Attorneys Emory Hurley and then-U.S.
Barack Obama arrived in Cartagena for the Summit of the Americas the day after the secret service agents were sent home.