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NCJ Number: 202327 Find in a Library
Title: Prospering On Crime: Money Laundering and Financial Crises
Author(s): Guilhem Fabre
Date Published: 2003
Page Count: 7
Sponsoring Agency: Universite du Havre
76600 LE HAVRE, France
Sale Source: Universite du Havre
25, rue Philippe-Lebon
76600 LE HAVRE,
Document: HTML
Type: Report (Study/Research)
Format: Document (Online)
Language: English
Country: France
Annotation: Using Russia, Mexico, Thailand, and Japan as examples, this paper discusses the link between money laundering associated with criminal enterprises and the financial crises of nations.
Abstract: Beyond the evasion of legal regulation, offshore markets in the post-Cold War period are all the more threatening because money laundering has played a significant role in the financial crises of nation states. In Russia, significant profits derived from organized crime and corruption were deposited in Swiss banks and reinvested in Russia in order to finance the growing national debt. Corruption and criminal activities played a major role in creating public debt and diverting funds to speculative overseas financial markets. In Mexico, starting in the 1990's, Mexican drug dealers took charge of one-half of the Colombian drug trade to the United States, thereby repatriating some US$3 to $8 billion per year, which exceeded the value of Mexico's oil exports. Some of these funds went to the consumption of luxury goods from the United States, thereby increasing the country's dependence on imports. The remainder was recycled into small businesses, luxury real estate, and the securities and gray currency markets, which levy some 10 to 15 percent for their money laundering services. In Mexico, money laundering was combined with international short-term capital flows to create excess liquidity and a stock market and real estate bubble. The Thai crisis, which triggered the Asian crisis of 1997, was largely influenced by organized crime's control of 8-11 percent of the Thai gross domestic product. Organized crime profits were derived mostly from gambling and prostitution, as well as drug trafficking out of Burma. The inflow of foreign short-term capital, most often transited through the Bangkok Offshore Banking Facility, accelerated local speculation by limiting investments at the expense of the productive and export sectors. In Japan, the role that the Yakuzas (an organized crime group) played in the speculative bubble of the 1980's is now known. Through their control of drug trafficking, prostitution, employment in the building sector, and public works, as well as a part of the lucrative business of electric billiard games, organized crime has laundered its illicit profits into speculative businesses. When the speculative bubble burst at the beginning of the 1990's, stock and real estate prices dropped, and bad debts swamped the banks and other financial institutions. Without significant changes in the regulatory superstructures of financial institutions worldwide, the links between those who prosper from crime, money laundering, and financial crises are likely to proliferate.
Main Term(s): Criminology
Index Term(s): Crime in foreign countries; Criminal infiltration of business; Economic analysis of crime; Japan; Mexico; Money laundering; Russian Federation; Thailand; Transnational Crime; Transnational Organized Crime
Note: Downloaded September 25, 2003.
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