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Momodou Posted - 16 Dec 2020 : 08:27:34
US Congress passed sweeping anti-money laundering that require companies to report their true owners
By Sidi Sanneh

Big news! Things are becoming harder for terrorists, human traffickers, arms dealers, and kleptocrats who abuse the U.S. financial system.

Congress overwhelmingly passed sweeping anti-money laundering legislation that will require companies to report their true owners to FinCEN, the Treasury Department’s intelligence unit. The simple measure should help prevent bad actors from dodging detection by hiding behind anonymous shell companies.

So how did the most substantial anti-corruption reforms in a generation hitch a lift in a national defense spending bill? Hear from advocates on the years of effort it took to get here, and the role ICIJ investigations like Panama Papers and FinCEN Files played in thrusting the issue into the international spotlight.

“When the Panama Papers leaked, there was a huge flurry of interest because there’s all of a sudden this recognition that it was kleptocrats, money launderers, corrupt officials the world over …. were all using a very common structure to help evade law enforcement, which was setting up an anonymous company,” Lakshmi Kumar, policy director of Global Financial Integrity, said.

President Donald Trump has repeatedly threatened to veto the bill over provisions unrelated to financial secrecy, so we’ll keep you posted on what happens next.

Source: International Consortium of Investigative Journalists

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