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Money Laundering Prevention: Deterring, Detecting, and Resolving Financial Fraud by Jonathan E. Turner

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Chapter 10

Reporting and Recovery

Reporting to Law Enforcement

Various reporting mechanisms are tied to specific enforcement actions and serve multiple roles for discovering laundered funds and prosecuting money launderers. The Currency and Monetary Instrument Report (CIMR) is often used at border crossings, which covers the transportation of cash or negotiable instruments of greater than $10,000. There is nothing illegal about transporting large volumes of cash or negotiable instruments, but the reporting requirements confuse criminals.

How reporting mechanisms are used can be seen at border crossings nearly every day. For example, an individual in Juarez, Mexico, sought to test the system and see how carefully currency inspections were being conducted by bringing U.S. currency back into the country. He carefully packaged $170,000 and instructed one of his employees to carry a currency bag with $20,000 in it. Upon arriving at the border, the carrier completed the CIMR for $20,000. Based on his responses, he was selected for screening and asked the destination of the funds. He stated that the $20,000 was going to a nearby Texas bank. When he was asked if that was all the money going to the bank, he asked to revise his form because “in error” he had recorded the wrong amount. When he pulled out the additional $170,000 it was seized by the border agents based on his having only put $20,000 on the CIMR. The government prosecuted the case against the contraband funds and the defendant ...

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