Chapter 7. Compliance Programs and Anti-Money Laundering Efforts

By Marc B. Sherman, Laura Connor, and David Meilstrup[220]

In the past, a documented and reasonably functional compliance program was adequate. Today that is not enough; the compliance program must also be effective. There is no better example of this than with money laundering. The threat of money laundering has become a serious concern for both governments and businesses of many nations. In the United States, money laundering has long been used in criminal enterprise, including narcotics trafficking. While the late 1990s brought money laundering investigations and prosecutions greater attention, it was the aftermath of the September 11, 2001, attacks that brought it to the forefront. The global proliferation of anti-money laundering (AML) laws and worldwide investigations have been utilized by authorities to confront the growing specter of international terrorism.

The enforcement of AML laws, however, does not only impact terrorism and narcotics trafficking, areas traditionally associated with money laundering. Vigorous international law enforcement and the breadth of the current anti-money laundering statutes put domestic and international businesses at risk of inadvertently violating the various laws that are at the heart of today's anti-money laundering effort. To aid in the fight against money laundering and terrorist financing activity, the United States government enacted the USA PATRIOT Act[221] ("PATRIOT Act" ...

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