Illegal gold mining and smuggling in South America shares common features with the conflict-diamond trade in Africa but has received far less by way of response from either government or industry, said Livia Wagner, a private-sector advisor with the Global Initiative Against Transnational Organized Crime, or GIATOC, a research and advocacy group based in Geneva. According to Wagner, organized crime groups and blacklisted terrorist organizations have taken advantage of the lack of attention and oversight in recent years to infiltrate the gold sector, generating hundreds of millions of dollars in revenue from illegal mines and using the bank accounts of...
Last month's confirmation hearing for Adam Szubin, who is seeking to become undersecretary for Treasury for Terrorism and Financial Crime, lacked the fireworks that might have been expected given the Republican majority's animosity toward the Obama administration's agreement with Iran.
There has been modest success in a decades-long effort to minimize the exploitation of gold. In many instances, money launderers have successfully transferred illicit proceeds through gold by simply tweaking its reported value in customs documents and other records.
Human trafficking profits are estimated to be between 10 and 40 billion dollars annually, but few people are taking the time to root out the related money laundering transactions, Dr. Louise Shelley told reporter Larissa Bernardes.