During 2007, a number of U.S. law enforcement and regulatory agencies provided training and technical assistance on money laundering countermeasures and financial investigations to their counterparts around the globe. These courses have been designed to give financial investigators, bank regulators, and prosecutors the necessary tools to recognize, investigate, and prosecute money laundering, financial crimes, terrorist financing, and related criminal activity. Courses have been provided in the United States as well as in the jurisdictions where the programs are targeted.
Department of State
The Department of State’s Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs (INL) Crime Programs Division teams help to strengthen criminal justice systems and the abilities of law enforcement agencies around the world to combat transnational criminal threats before they extend beyond their borders and impact our homeland. Through its international programs, as well as in coordination with other INL offices and U.S. government agencies, the INL Crime Programs Division addresses a broad cross-section of law enforcement and criminal justice sector areas including: counternarcotics; demand reduction; money laundering, financial crime, and terrorist financing; corruption, smuggling of goods; illegal migration; trafficking in persons; domestic violence; border controls; document security; cybercrime; intellectual property rights; law enforcement; police academy development; and assistance to judiciaries and prosecutors. While this report is limited to training and assistance to combat money laundering and the financing of terrorism, anticorruption training is closely related to USG anti-money laundering/counter-terrorist financing training, and frequently mirrors it: For example, INL’s anticorruption initiatives help to 1) establish shared global anticorruption standards such as the United Nations Convention against Corruption, subscribed to by 107 countries; 2) strengthen global political will to fight corruption and to implement multilateral anti-corruption commitments; 3) increase international cooperation to prosecute corruption, identify and prevent access by kleptocrats to financial systems, deny safe haven to corrupt officials, and identify, recover, and return proceeds of corruption; and 4) provide anticorruption assistance that strengthens legal frameworks and builds capacity of critical law enforcement and rule of law institutions, such as police, investigators, prosecutors, judges, ethics offices, auditors, inspectors general, and other oversight, regulatory and law enforcement officials.
INL and the Department’s Bureau of Counterterrorism (S/CT) co-chair the interagency Terrorist Finance Working Group (TFWG) and together implement a multimillion dollar training and technical assistance program designed to develop or enhance the capacity of a selected group of more than two dozen countries that have been used or are vulnerable to being used to finance terrorism. As is the case with the more than 100 other countries to which INL-funded training was delivered in 2007, the capacity to thwart the funding of terrorism is dependent on the development of a robust anti-money laundering regime. Supported by and in coordination with the Department of State, the Department of Justice, Department of Homeland Security, Department of Treasury, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, and various nongovernmental organizations, the TFWG member agencies offer law enforcement, regulatory and criminal justice programs worldwide. This integrated approach includes assistance with the drafting of legislation and regulations that comport with international standards, and the training of law enforcement, the judiciary and bank regulators, as well as the development of financial intelligence units capable of collecting, analyzing and disseminating financial information to foreign analogs. Courses have been provided in the United States as well as in the jurisdictions to which the programs are targeted.
Nearly every federal law enforcement agency assisted in this effort by providing basic and advanced training courses in all aspects of financial criminal investigation. Likewise, bank regulatory agencies participated in providing advanced anti-money laundering/counterterrorist financing training to supervisory entities. In addition, INL made funds available for the intermittent or full-time posting of legal and financial mentors at selected overseas locations. These advisors work directly with host governments to assist in the creation, implementation, and enforcement of anti-money laundering and financial crime legislation. INL also provided several federal agencies funding to conduct multi-agency financial crime training assessments and develop specialized training in specific jurisdictions to combat money laundering.
The success of the Brazilian Trade Transparency Unit (TTU), less than nine months after being established in late 2005, augurs well for the newer TTUs of Argentina and Paraguay. The Argentine TTU has uncovered a major trade-based anomaly that law enforcement is currently investigating. In 2006, INL obligated funds to the Department of Homeland Security to establish a TTU in Southeast Asia and, in 2007, to develop a TTU in Mexico. Similar to the Egmont Group of financial intelligence units that examines and exchanges information gathered through financial transparency reporting requirements, an international network of TTUs will foster the sharing of disparities in trade data between countries and be a potent weapon in combating customs fraud and trade-based money laundering. Trade is the common denominator in most of the world’s alternative remittance systems and underground banking systems. Trade-based value transfer systems have also been used in terrorist finance.
The success of the Caribbean Anti-Money Laundering Program (CALP) convinced INL that a similar type of program for small Pacific island jurisdictions had the potential of developing viable anti-money laundering/counterterrorist regimes. Accordingly, INL contributed $1.5 million to the Pacific Islands Forum to develop the Pacific Island Anti-Money Laundering Program (PALP). The objectives of the PALP are to reduce the laundering of the proceeds of all serious crime and the financing of terrorist financing by facilitating the prevention, investigation, and prosecution of money laundering. The PALP’s staff of resident mentors provides regional and bilateral mentoring, training and technical assistance to the Pacific Islands Forum’s 14 non-FATF member states for the purpose of developing viable regimes that comport with international standards. The PALP is now in its second year. INL will contribute a total of $6 million to the Pacific Islands Forum for the four-year PALP project.
In FY07, INL obligated $1.7 million for the United Nations Global Program against Money Laundering (GPML). In addition to sponsoring money laundering conferences and providing short-term training courses, the GPML instituted a unique longer-term technical assistance initiative through its mentoring program. The mentoring program provides advisors on a year-long basis to specific countries or regions. GPML mentors provided assistance to the Secretariat of the Eastern and Southern Africa Anti-Money Laundering Group (ESAAMLG) and to the Horn of Africa countries targeted by the President’s East Africa Counterterrorism Initiative. GPML resident mentors provided country-specific assistance to the Philippines’ FIU, and asset forfeiture assistance to Namibia, Botswana, and Zambia. The mentor provided legal inputs to amend relevant legislation in each country, and initiated and monitored the Prosecutor Placement Program, an initiative aimed at placing prosecutors from the region for a certain period of time within the Asset Forfeiture Unit of the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) in South Africa. The GPML mentors in Central Asia and the Mekong Delta are assisting the countries in those regions to develop viable anti-money laundering/counterterrorist financing regimes. The GPML continues to develop interactive computer-based programs that are translated into several languages and distributed globally.
INL continues to provide significant financial support for many of the anti-money laundering bodies around the globe. During 2007, INL supported the Financial Action Task Force (FATF), the international standard setting organization. INL continued to be the sole U.S. Government financial supporter of the FATF-style regional bodies, including the Asia/Pacific Group on Money Laundering (APG), the Council of Europe’s MONEYVAL, the Caribbean Financial Action Task Force (CFATF), the Eastern and Southern Africa Anti-Money Laundering Group (ESAAMLG) and the South American Financial Action Task Force (GAFISUD). INL also financially supported the Organization of American States (OAS) Inter-American Drug Abuse Control Commission (CICAD) Experts Group to Control Money Laundering and the OAS Inter-American Counter-Terrorism Committee.
As in previous years, INL training programs continue to focus on an interagency and multilateral approach and on bringing together, where possible, foreign law enforcement, judicial and financial supervisory and regulatory authorities. This approach encourages an extensive dialogue and exchange of information. This approach has been used successfully in Asia, Central and South America, Central Asia, and Central and Eastern Europe. INL also provides funding for many of the regional training and technical assistance programs offered by the various law enforcement agencies, including assistance to the International Law Enforcement Academies.
International Law Enforcement Academies (ILEAs)
The mission of the regional ILEAs has been to support emerging democracies, help protect U.S. interests through international cooperation, and promote social, political and economic stability by combating crime. To achieve these goals, the ILEA program has provided high-quality training and technical assistance, supported institution building and enforcement capability, and fostered relationships of American law enforcement agencies with their counterparts in each region. ILEAs have also encouraged strong partnerships among regional countries, to address common problems associated with criminal activity.
The ILEA concept and philosophy is the result of a united effort by all participants—government agencies and ministries, trainers, managers, and students—to achieve the common foreign policy goal of international law enforcement. The goal is to train professionals who will craft the future of the rule of law, human dignity, personal safety and global security.
The ILEAs are a progressive concept in the area of international assistance programs. The regional ILEAs offer three different types of programs. The Core program, a series of specialized training courses and regional seminars tailored to region-specific needs and emerging global threats, typically includes 50 participants, normally from three or more countries. The specialized courses, comprised of about 30 participants, are normally one or two weeks long and often run simultaneously with the Core program. Lastly, there are regional seminars with different topical foci; these have included transnational crimes, financial crimes, and counterterrorism.
The ILEAs help to develop an extensive network of alumni who exchange information with their U.S. counterparts and assist in transnational investigations. These graduates are also expected to become the leaders and decision-makers in their respective societies. The Department of State works with the Departments of Justice (DOJ), Homeland Security (DHS) and Treasury, and with foreign governments to implement the ILEA programs. To date, the combined ILEAs have trained over 20,000 officials from over 75 countries in Africa, Asia, Europe and Latin America. The ILEA budget averages approximately $16 to 18 million annually.
Africa. ILEA Gaborone (Botswana) opened in 2001. The main feature of this ILEA is a six-week intensive personal and professional development program, called the Law Enforcement Executive Development Program (LEEDP), for law enforcement mid-level managers. The LEEDP brings together approximately 42 participants from several nations for training on topics such as combating transnational criminal activity, supporting democracy by stressing the rule of law in international and domestic police operations, and by raising the professionalism of officers involved in the fight against crime. ILEA Gaborone also offers specialized courses for police and other criminal justice officials to enhance their capacity to work with U.S. and regional officials to combat international criminal activities. These courses concentrate on specific methods and techniques in a variety of subjects, such as counterterrorism, anti-corruption, financial crimes, border security, drug enforcement, firearms and many others.
Instruction is provided to participants from Angola, Botswana, Lesotho, Malawi, Mauritius, Mozambique, Namibia, Seychelles, South Africa, Swaziland, Tanzania, Zambia, Djibouti, Ethiopia, Kenya, Uganda, Nigeria, Cameroon, Comoros, Congo, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Gabon and Madagascar. Burundi, Rwanda, Sierra Leone, Ghana, Guinea and Senegal are projected to join the program during the latter part of 2008.
United States and Botswana trainers provide instruction. ILEA Gaborone has offered specialized courses on money laundering/terrorist financing-related topics such as Criminal Investigation (presented by FBI) and International Banking & Financial Forensic Program (presented by DHS and the Federal Law Enforcement Training Center), and International Money Laundering Scheme (presented by ICE). ILEA Gaborone trains approximately 500 students annually.
Asia. ILEA Bangkok (Thailand) opened in March 1999. This ILEA focuses on enhancing the effectiveness of regional cooperation against the principal transnational crime threats in Southeast Asia—illicit drug trafficking, financial crimes, and alien smuggling. The ILEA provides a Core course (the Supervisory Criminal Investigator Course or SCIC) of management and technical instruction for supervisory criminal investigators and other criminal justice managers. In addition, this ILEA presents one Senior Executive program and about 18 specialized courses—each lasting one to two weeks—in a variety of criminal justice topics. The principal objectives of the ILEA are the development of effective law enforcement cooperation within the member countries of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), East Timor and China (including Hong Kong and Macau), and the strengthening of each country’s criminal justice institutions to increase its abilities to cooperate in the suppression of transnational crime.
Instruction is provided to participants from Brunei, Cambodia, East Timor, China, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Laos, Macau, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam. Subject matter experts from the United States, Thailand, Japan, Netherlands, Philippines and Hong Kong provide instruction. ILEA Bangkok has offered specialized courses on money laundering/terrorist financing-related topics such as Computer Crime Investigations (presented by FBI and DHS) and Complex Financial Investigations (presented by IRS, FBI and DEA). Total annual student participation is approximately 800.
Europe. ILEA Budapest (Hungary) opened in 1995. Its mission has been to support the region’s emerging democracies by combating an increase in criminal activity that emerged against the backdrop of economic and political restructuring following the collapse of the Soviet Union. ILEA Budapest offers three different types of programs: an eight-week Core course, Regional Seminars and Specialized courses in a variety of criminal justice topics. Instruction is provided to participants from Albania, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Georgia, Hungary, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyz Republic, Latvia, Lithuania, Macedonia, Moldova, Montenegro, Poland, Romania, Russia, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Ukraine and Uzbekistan.
Trainers from 17 federal agencies and local jurisdictions from the United States, Hungary, Canada, Germany, United Kingdom, Netherlands, Ireland, Italy, Russia, Interpol and the Council of Europe provide instruction. ILEA Budapest has offered specialized courses on money laundering/terrorist financing-related topics such as Investigating/Prosecuting Organized Crime and Transnational Money Laundering (both presented by DOJ/OPDAT). ILEA Budapest trains approximately 800 students annually.
Global. ILEA Roswell (New Mexico) opened in September 2001. This ILEA offers a curriculum comprised of courses similar to those provided at a typical Criminal Justice university/college. These three-week courses have been designed and are taught by academicians for foreign law enforcement officials. This Academy is unique in its format and composition with a strictly academic focus and a worldwide student body. The participants are middle to senior level law enforcement and criminal justice officials from Eastern Europe; Russia, the states of the former Soviet Union; Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) member countries; and the People’s Republic of China (including the Special Autonomous Regions of Hong Kong and Macau); and member countries of the Southern African Development Community (SADC) plus other East and West African countries; the Caribbean, Central and South American countries. The students are drawn from pools of ILEA graduates from the Academies in Bangkok, Budapest, Gaborone and San Salvador. ILEA Roswell trains approximately 350 students annually.
Latin America. ILEA San Salvador was established in 2005. The training program for the newest ILEA is similar to the ILEAs in Bangkok, Budapest and Gaborone and will offer a six-week Law Enforcement Management Development Program (LEMDP) for law enforcement and criminal justice officials as well as specialized courses for police, prosecutors, and judicial officials. In 2008, ILEA San Salvador will deliver four LEMDP sessions and approximately 16 Specialized courses that will concentrate on attacking international terrorism, illegal trafficking in drugs, alien smuggling, terrorist financing, financial crimes, culture of lawfulness and accountability in government. Components of the six-week LEMDP training session will focus on terrorist financing (presented by the FBI), international money laundering (presented by ICE) and financial evidence/money laundering application (presented by DHS/FLETC and IRS). The Specialized course schedule will include courses on financial crimes investigations (presented by DHS/ICE) and money laundering training (presented by IRS). Instruction is provided to participants from: Argentina, Bardados, Bahamas, Belize, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Jamaica, Nicaragua, Panamá, Paraguay, Perú, Trinidad and Tobago, Uruguay and Venezuela. ILEA San Salvador trains approximately 800 students per year
The ILEA Regional Training Center located in Peru opened in 2007. The center will augment the delivery of region-specific training for Latin America and will concentrate on specialized courses on critical topics for countries in the Southern Cone and Andean Regions. The RTC is projected to train approximately 240 students per year.
Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (FRB)
An important component in the United States’ efforts to combat and deter money laundering and terrorist financing is to verify that supervised organizations comply with the Bank Secrecy Act (BSA) and have programs in place to comply with the Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) sanctions. Under the auspices of the Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council’s (FFIEC) BSA/Anti-Money Laundering (AML) Working Group, the federal bank regulatory agencies, Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN), OFAC, and the Conference of State Banking Supervisors collaborated in the development of the FFIEC’s BSA/AML Examination Manual, released in 2005 and updated in 2006. In 2007, the manual was updated again to further clarify supervisory expectations, incorporate new regulatory issuances, and respond to industry requests for additional guidance.
Internationally, the FRB conducted training and provided technical assistance to bank supervisors and law enforcement officials in AML and counterterrorist financing (CTF) tactics in partnership with regional supervisory groups or multilateral institutions, including the South East Asian Central Banks, and the Caribbean Association of Indigenous Bankers. In 2007, the FRB provided training and/or technical assistance to regulators and bankers in Russia and Mexico. In addition, the FRB sponsored an AML examination seminar in Chicago for bank supervisors from 25 different countries.
Due to the importance that the FRB places on international standards, the FRB’s AML experts participate regularly in the U.S. delegation to the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) and the Basel Committee’s AML/CTF expert group. The FRB is also an active participant in the U.S. Treasury Department’s ongoing Private Sector Dialogue conferences, attending the Latin American session in Bogotá and the Middle East and North Africa meeting in Dubai this year. Staff also meets frequently with industry groups and foreign supervisors to support industry best practices in this area.
The FRB presented training courses on ‘International Money Movement’ to domestic law enforcement agencies, including the Department of Homeland Security’s Bureau for Immigration and Customs Enforcement (DHS/ICE), as well as at the Federal Law Enforcement Training Center (FLETC) during 2007.
Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), Department of Justice
The Office of Financial Operations provided anti-money laundering and/or asset forfeiture training in 2007 to officials from Thailand, Australia, Belgium, Aruba, Peru, Canada, Indonesia, and Mexico.
The DEA Office of International Training facilitated three Department of Justice (DOJ)/Asset Forfeiture Money Laundering Seminars to foreign audiences: (1) International Asset Forfeiture Seminar, (2) Advanced International Asset Forfeiture Seminar, and (3) Money Laundering Seminar. During fiscal year 2007, a total of 214 participants were trained at Basic and Advanced Asset Forfeiture/Money Laundering Seminars from the following countries: Cyprus, Indonesia, Mexico, Israel, and New Zealand. The core topics in the International Asset Forfeiture Seminar include: financial investigations; case study; tracing hidden assets; DEA asset forfeiture procedures and U.S. forfeiture law; international asset forfeiture sharing and cooperation; debriefing of financial sources of information. Elective topics include: the business of asset forfeiture (processing and managing seized assets); document exploitation; operational management of an asset forfeiture unit; operation and utilization of FinCEN resources; ethical considerations in the use of asset forfeiture funds; analysis of net worth income and practical application and use of undercover bank accounts. The Advanced Course includes core topics of: international case studies; the use of the Internet in money laundering; international banking; international issues in money laundering and forfeiture; DEA asset forfeiture procedures and practical applications. Elective topics include: reverse undercover sting operations; use of undercover bank accounts; ethical considerations in the use of asset forfeiture funds; tracing the origins of financial assets; document exploitation; use of suspicious activity reports to initiate and pursue investigations; and terrorist financing. Course topics are determined by the investigative capacity and experience level of the participants and the money laundering laws of the host nation. The International Asset Forfeiture and Money Laundering program is coordinated by the International Training Section of DEA in a joint effort with the Department of Justice.
Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Department of Justice
During 2007, with the assistance of State Department funding, Special Agents and other subject matter experts of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) continued their extensive international training in terrorist financing, money laundering, financial fraud, racketeering enterprise investigations, and complex financial crimes. The FBI’s International Training and Assistance Unit (ITAU), is located at the FBI Academy in Quantico, Virginia. ITAU coordinates with the Terrorist Financing and Operations Section of the FBI’s Counterterrorism Division, as well as other divisions within FBI Headquarters and in the field, to provide instructors for these international initiatives. FBI instructors, who are most often intelligence analysts, operational Special Agents or Supervisory Special Agents from headquarters or the field, rely on their experience to relate to the international law enforcement students as peers and partners in the training courses.
The FBI regularly conducts training through the International Law Enforcement Academies (ILEA) in Bangkok, Thailand; Budapest, Hungary; Gaborone, Botswana; and San Salvador, El Salvador. In 2007, the FBI delivered training in white collar crime investigations to 240 students from ten countries at ILEA Budapest. At the ILEA Bangkok, the FBI provided training to 50 students from Thailand in the Supervisory Criminal Investigators course and 50 students from Thailand in a Complex Financial Investigations course. Similarly, at the ILEA Gaborone, the FBI provided terrorist financing training to 161 students from 23 African countries and at the ILEA San Salvador, training was provided to 151 students from El Salvador, Guatemala, Nicaragua, and Honduras.
The FBI also provided training to officials in Jordan, Pakistan, Qatar, Bosnia-Herzegovina, South Africa, Latvia, Bangladesh, and Kuwait. This training includes FBI participation in a Combating Money Laundering & Terrorism Financing Seminar that the Department of Justice’s Office of Overseas Prosecutorial Development delivered to 45 students in Jordan. It also includes the one-week Terrorism Financing and Money Laundering initiatives that the FBI regularly conducts jointly with the Internal Revenue Service, Criminal Investigative Division, and which included 136 international students in 2007. In its other training programs, held at the FBI Academy, the FBI included blocks or instruction on terrorist financing and/or money laundering for 39 students from 16 Latin American countries participating in the Latin American Law Enforcement Executive Development Seminar, and for 28 students from 11 Middle Eastern and Northern African countries participating in the second Arabic Language Law Enforcement Executive Development Seminar, and 40 students from Mexico for a special Mexican Law Enforcement Executive Development Seminar. Terrorist financing instruction was also included in the FBI’s Pacific Training Initiative, which served 55 participants from ten countries: Australia, Cambodia, China, Hong Kong, India, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, Philippines, and Thailand. The FBI provided training to 50 students from Malaysia in a Forensic Accounting course.
Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC)
In 2007, the FDIC continued to work in partnership with several federal agencies to combat money laundering and the global flow of terrorist funds. Additionally, the FDIC planned and participated in missions to assess vulnerabilities to terrorist financing activity worldwide, including developing and implementing plans to assist foreign governments in their efforts. To accomplish this objective, the FDIC has 32 individuals available to participate in foreign anti-money laundering and counter-terrorist financing (AML/CTF) missions. Periodically, FDIC management and staff meet with supervisory and law enforcement representatives from various countries to discuss AML issues, including examination policies and procedures, the USA PATRIOT Act requirements, suspicious activity reporting requirements, and interagency information sharing mechanisms. In 2007, the FDIC gave such presentations to representatives from Japan, Korea, Lebanon, Morocco and Uruguay.
In 2007, in partnership with the Department of State, the FDIC hosted three sessions on AML/CTF to 57 individuals from Algeria, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Egypt, Indonesia, Jordan, Kuwait, Morocco, Pakistan, Paraguay, Philippines, Tanzania, and Turkey. The sessions included the AML examination process, customer due diligence, and foreign correspondent banking. In February and November 2007, the FDIC participated in interagency Financial Systems Assessment Teams (FSAT) to Yemen and Senegal, respectively. The FSAT reviewed the countries’ AML laws and provided information in the areas of customer identification programs, financial intelligence units and the monitoring of nonbank financial institutions.
In December 2007, the FDIC participated in the third annual U.S.-Middle East/North Africa Private Sector Dialogue in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. The focus of the conference was to raise awareness of terrorist financing and money laundering risks, facilitate a better understanding of effective practices and programs to combat such risks, and strengthen implementation of effective AML/CTF controls.
Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN), Department of Treasury
FinCEN, a bureau of the U.S. Department of the Treasury and the U.S. financial intelligence unit (FIU), coordinates and provides training and technical assistance to foreign nations seeking to improve their capabilities to combat money laundering, terrorist financing, and other financial crimes. A specific focus of FinCEN is the creation and strengthening of FIUs, a valuable component of a country’s anti-money laundering/counter-terrorist financing (AML/CTF) regime. FinCEN’s international training program has two primary focuses: (1) instruction and presentations to a broad range of government officials, financial regulators, law enforcement officers, and others on the subjects of money laundering, terrorist financing, financial crime, and on FinCEN’s mission and operation; and (2) individualized training to FIU counterparts regarding FIU operations and analysis training via personnel exchanges and FIU development seminars. Much of FinCEN’s work involves strengthening existing FIUs and the channels of communication used to share information to support anti-money laundering investigations. Participation in personnel exchanges (from the foreign FIU to FinCEN and vice versa), delegation visits to/from foreign FIUs, and coordinating regional workshops are just a few examples of FinCEN activities designed to assist and support FIUs.
In 2007, FinCEN hosted representatives from approximately 29 countries. These visits, typically lasting one to three days, focused on topics such as money laundering trends and patterns, the Bank Secrecy Act, USA PATRIOT ACT, communications systems and databases, case processing, and the goals and mission of FinCEN. Representatives from foreign financial and law enforcement sectors generally spend one to two days at FinCEN learning about money laundering, the U.S. AML regime and reporting requirements, the national and international roles of a financial intelligence unit, and various other topics.
FinCEN gives assistance to new or developing FIUs that are not yet members of the Egmont Group of FIUs. Comprised of FIUs that cooperatively agree to share financial intelligence, Egmont has become the standard-setting body for FIUs. FinCEN hosts FIU orientation visits and provides training and mentoring on FIU development. In 2007, FinCEN hosted a representative from Namibia’s nascent FIU for an orientation visit that included an overview on various aspects of developing a newly formed FIU. Also, at the invitation of FinCEN’s Director, a delegation from Saudi Arabia’s FIU was hosted by FinCEN for a weeklong seminar that included an overview of FinCEN’s operations and programs, as well as briefings from other U.S. agencies selected by FinCEN (OCC, IRS, ICE, FBI and DOJ) to discuss their part in the U.S. AML/CTF regime.
For those FIUs that are fully operational, FinCEN’s goal is to assist the unit in increasing effectiveness, improving information sharing capabilities, and better understanding the phenomena of money laundering and terrorist financing. As a member of the Egmont Group, FinCEN works closely with other member FIUs to provide training and technical assistance to countries and jurisdictions interested in establishing their own FIUs and obtaining candidacy for membership in the Egmont Group. Additionally, FinCEN works multilaterally through its representative on the Egmont Training Working Group to design, implement, and co-teach Egmont-sponsored regional training programs to both Egmont member and Egmont candidate FIUs.
In addition to hosting delegations for training on FinCEN premises, FinCEN conducts training courses and seminars abroad, both independently and in conjunction with other domestic and foreign agencies, counterpart FIUs, and international organizations. Occasionally, FinCEN’s training and technical assistance programming is developed jointly with these other agencies to address specific needs of the jurisdiction/country receiving assistance. Topics such as FIU primary and secondary functions; regulatory issues; international case processing procedures; technology infrastructure and security; and terrorist financing and money laundering trends and typologies provide trainees with broader knowledge and a better understanding of the topics of money laundering and terrorist financing. In 2007, FinCEN collaborated with the Canadian FIU (FINTRAC) and the World Bank to conduct a training workshop for 12 Caribbean FIUs. The workshop focused on enhancing the capacity and cooperation of Caribbean FIUs to combat money laundering and the financing of terrorism. Over a five day training course, participants engaged in discussions and practical exercises relating to various topics such as terrorist financing, nonprofit organizations, protection of information, alternative remittance systems, international and domestic cooperation, and strengthening the analysis of financial reports.
FinCEN conducts core analytical training to counterpart FIUs both at FinCEN and abroad, often in conjunction with other U.S. agencies. FinCEN’s analytical training program, typically delivered over the course of one to two weeks, provides foreign analysts with basic skills in critical thinking and analysis; data collection; database research; suspicious transactions analysis; the intelligence cycle; charting; data mining; and case presentation. In 2007, FinCEN provided training on basic analytical skills to FIUs and other agencies from the intelligence, regulatory and enforcement communities in Bangladesh, Saudi Arabia, Afghanistan Egypt and Bosnia. Over the last twelve months, in an effort to reinforce the sharing of information among established Egmont-member FIUs, FinCEN conducted personnel exchanges with Egmont Group members Chile, Canada, Mexico and Japan. These exchanges offer the opportunity for FIU personnel to see first-hand how another FIU operates; develop joint analytical projects and other strategic initiatives; and also to work jointly on on-going financial crimes cases. The participants in these exchanges share ideas, innovations, and insights that lead to improvements in such areas as analysis, information flow, and information security at their home FIUs, in addition to deeper and more sustained operational collaboration.
Immigration and Customs Enforcement, Department of Homeland Security (DHS)
During 2007, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), Financial, Narcotics and Public Safety Division, in conjunction with the Office of International Affairs, delivered money laundering/terrorist financing, bulk cash smuggling, and financial investigations training to law enforcement, regulatory, banking and trade officials from more than 50 foreign countries. The training was conducted in both bilateral and multilateral engagements. ICE money laundering and financial investigations training is based on the broad experience and expertise achieved by leading U.S. efforts in investigating international money laundering and financial crimes as part of the former U.S. Customs Service.
Using primarily State Department/INL funding, ICE provided bilateral and multilateral training and technical assistance on the interdiction and investigation of bulk cash smuggling for 340 officials representing a total of 36 countries. ICE conducted basic bulk cash smuggling training in the Philippines, South Africa, Malaysia, Indonesia, Morocco, Bosnia, and Algeria. ICE also provided an operational training seminar on advanced bulk cash smuggling in the Philippines. Bulk cash smuggling training was also delivered to two regional Financial Action Task Force-style regional bodies (FATF/FSRBs): the Eastern and Southern African Anti-Money Laundering Group (ESAAMLG) and the Inter-Government Action Group Against Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing (GIABA.) All ICE training was conducted in furtherance of the FATF Special Recommendation IX on Cash Couriers.
ICE also conducted financial investigation/money laundering training programs for more than 600 participants at the State Department sponsored International Law Enforcement Academy (ILEA) locations in El Salvador, Thailand, Hungary and Botswana. A specialized advanced financial training program was given three times at the ILEA in Thailand.
Trade Transparency Units (TTUs)
Trade Transparency Units (TTUs) identify anomalies related to cross-border trade that are indicative of international trade-based money laundering. TTUs generate, initiate and support investigations and prosecutions related to trade-based money laundering, the illegal movement of criminal proceeds across international borders, alternative money remittance systems, and other financial crimes. By sharing trade data, ICE and participating foreign governments are able to see both sides of import and export transactions for commodities entering or exiting their countries, thus assisting in the investigation of international money laundering organizations
With funding from the Department of State’s Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement (INL), ICE worked to expand the network of operational foreign Trade Transparency Units (TTU’s) beyond Colombia, Brazil, and Argentina by providing IT equipment and training to the newly established TTU in Paraguay. ICE also initiated the process of establishing a TTU in Mexico City, Mexico and is conducting suitability surveys in preparation of establishing a TTU in Southeast Asia.
In 2007, ICE updated the technical capabilities of existing TTUs and trained new TTU personnel in Colombia, Argentina, and Paraguay as well as members of their financial intelligence units. Additionally, ICE strengthened its relationship with its TTUs by deploying temporary personnel overseas to work onsite and provide hands on training to all four TTUs in the hemisphere. This action resulted in immediate information sharing between the U.S. and the foreign TTUs in furtherance of ongoing joint criminal investigations.
Other ICE Programs
Additionally, in 2007, ICE expanded Operation Firewall, a joint strategic bulk cash smuggling initiative with U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) to provide hands on training and capacity building to Mexican law enforcement officials. Operation Firewall was initiated to address the threat of bulk cash smuggling via commercial and private passenger vehicles, commercial airline shipments, commercial airline passengers, and pedestrians transiting into Mexico and Canada, as well as other foreign locations. In 2007, Operation Firewall had 845 seizures totaling more than $4.3 million in U.S. currency and negotiable instruments.
Under the ICE Cornerstone initiative, training was developed and designed to provide the financial and trade sectors with the necessary skills to identify and develop methodologies to detect suspicious transactions indicative of money laundering and criminal activity. In furtherance of Cornerstone, ICE has appointed field and headquarters agents who are dedicated to providing training to the financial and trade communities on identifying and preventing exploitation by criminal and terrorist organizations. In 2007, ICE Cornerstone liaisons conducted 1,390 outreach meetings with more than 23,000 industry professionals in the U.S. and abroad.
Internal Revenue Service (IRS), Criminal Investigative Division (CID) Department of Treasury
In calendar year 2007, the IRS Criminal Investigative Division (IRS-CID) continued their involvement in international training and technical assistance efforts designed to assist international law enforcement officers in detecting tax, money laundering and terrorist financing crimes. With funding provided by the Department of State, IRS-CID delivered training through agency and multi-agency technical assistance programs to international law enforcement agencies. Training consisted of both basic and advanced financial investigative techniques. IRS-CID provided instructor and course delivery support to the four International Law Enforcement Academies (ILEAs) in Bangkok, Thailand; Budapest, Hungary; Gaborone, Botswana; and San Salvador, El Salvador.
At ILEA Bangkok, IRS-CID participated in one Supervisory Criminal Investigator course #24 (SCIC) and was the coordinating agency of the Complex Financial Investigations #9 (CFI) course. These courses are provided to senior, mid-level, and first-line law enforcement supervisors and officers from the countries of Cambodia, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Macau, Malaysia, Republic of China, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, East Timor, and Vietnam.
At ILEA Budapest, IRS-CID participated in five sessions, ILEA 59-63, delivering financial investigative techniques training. The countries that participated in these classes are Albania, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Georgia, Hungary, Kazakhstan, Macedonia, Moldova, Romania, Russia, Serbia, and Ukraine.
At ILEA Gaborone, IRS-CID participated in four Law Enforcement Executive Development programs (LEED 22-25), delivering financial investigative techniques training. IRS-CID also provided a class coordinator for LEED 22, covering a six-week period, with the responsibilities of coordinating and supervising the participant’s daily duties and activities. Countries that participated in these classes are Angola, Botswana, Lesotho, Malawi, Mauritius, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa, Swaziland, Tanzania, Zambia, Djibouti, Ethiopia, Kenya, Seychelles, Uganda, Nigeria, Cameroon, Comoros, Republic of the Congo, Gabon, and Madagascar.
At ILEA-San Salvador, IRS-CID participated in four of the America’s Law Enforcement Development programs (LEMDP 004-LEMDP 007), delivering financial investigative techniques training. Countries that participated in these classes are Antigua and Barbuda, Argentina, Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Chile, El Salvador, Grenada, Guatemala, Jamaica, Mexico, Paraguay, Peru, St. Kitts and Nevis, and Suriname. LEMDP stresses the importance of conducting a financial investigation to further develop a large scale, criminal investigation.
IRS-CID participated in a conference to raise public awareness of asset forfeiture as an effective law enforcement tool in Belgrade, Serbia. The conference was co-sponsored by the OPDAT and the Organization for Security and Co-Operation in Europe (OSCE). The conference was attended by English, Serbian, and Italian speaking participants.
IRS-CID delivered a Forensic Accounting course for Investigators of the Bank of Negara held in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. The Internal Revenue Service Tax Advisory Administrative Services (TAAS) funded the program.
IRS-CID participated in delivering a Terrorism Financing/Money Laundering course hosted by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) in Doha, Qatar.
IRS-CID delivered an International Financial Fraud Training (IFFT) at FLETC, Glynco, Georgia. The class, sponsored by Tax Advisory Administrative Services (TAAS), was attended by 25 foreign dignitaries from Albania, Bangladesh, Bosnia, China, Guatemala, Republic of Korea, Romania, Taiwan, and Trinidad and Tobago.
IRS-CID participated in a conference hosted by The Department of Justice Office of Overseas Prosecutorial Development Assistance and Training (OPDAT) in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. The conference focused on Terrorism Financing through Charities.
IRS-CID participated in delivering the Bulgarian Prosecutor Training course focusing on Following the Money and Dismantling the Criminal Organization in Velinko Tarnovo, Bulgaria, and Plovdiv, Bulgaria. The Department of Justice Office of Overseas Prosecutorial Development, Assistance and Training (OPDAT) hosted the program.
IRS-CID participated in delivering an Anti-Money Laundering and Anti-Terrorism Financing Training course in Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina, for 30 law enforcement agents and prosecuting attorneys. The program was sponsored by The Department of State.
IRS-CID, with the FBI, delivered a Financial Investigative Techniques along with a Terrorism Financing Training course in Cebu, Philippines.
IRS-CID delivered two Financial Investigative Techniques courses, hosted by Overseas Prosecutorial Development Training and Assistance (OPDAT), in Dhaka, Bangladesh.
IRS-CID delivered two Advanced Tax Fraud Investigative Techniques courses, hosted by the U.S. Agency of International Development (USAID), in Manila, Philippines.
IRS-CID delivered a Financial Investigative Techniques Training program in Managua, Nicaragua, with 26 participants. The Department of Justice, Office of Overseas Prosecutorial Development, Assistance and Training (OPDAT) hosted the program.
IRS-CID participated in delivering a Financial Fraud Training course in Lagos, Nigeria, with 55 participants from the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission. The Department of State and the FBI hosted the course.
IRS-CID delivered a Financial Investigative Techniques Training in Seoul, South Korea. Thirty participants from several Regional Tax Offices attended. Tax Administration Advisory Services and the National Tax Service of Korea hosted the training.
IRS-CID assisted the FBI in delivering a Terrorism Financing and Money Laundering course in Johannesburg, South Africa. The course was attended by 31 participants; 25 from the Johannesburg Metropolitan Police Department (JMPD) and 6 from the South African National Police.
IRS-CID participated with the FBI in delivering an Investigative Techniques and Anti-Terrorism course in Riga, Latvia. Law enforcement agents and prosecuting attorneys attended the program. The Department of State and the Embassy of the United States Riga, Latvia hosted the training.
IRS-CID assisted delivering a Parallel Financial Investigations Training course with 23 participants from the Ministry of Interior, the Kyrgyz Republic Prosecutor’s office, and Kyrgyz Republic State Border Guard Service, in Kyrgyzstan, Russia. The training was hosted by the FLETC International Programs Division.
During FY 2007, the IRS-CI Attache for the Caribbean assisted with the coordination and served as a liaison between the Treasury, Office of Technical Assistance (OTA), and OPDAT, along with the State Department and the Attorney Generals’ Financial Investigations Units of Antigua and Grenada to provide a workshop to both countries on financial investigations. The workshops were to assist those countries in formulating methodologies of how to work criminal financial investigations, as well as setting up a handbook for each FIU on policies and procedures when working financial investigations. In both countries, the workshops were a success and in Grenada, the workshop was attended by police officers, as well as prosecutors.
In 2007, IRS-CI Attache for Bogota conducted four classes in Colombia and one class in Costa Rica of advanced money laundering training. In total over 300 host nation law enforcement officers and government attorneys were trained with the financial assistance of OPDAT and ICITAP of U.S. Embassy Bogota.
Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC), Department of Treasury
The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) provides Bank Secrecy Act (BSA) and anti-money laundering (AML) guidance to national banks and federal branches of foreign banking organizations and performs on-site examinations of compliance with BSA/AML laws and regulations. The OCC also develops and provides, in conjunction with other federal banking regulators, BSA/AML guidance and training to examiners and foreign banking supervisors. The on-site examinations include reviewing compliance with BSA/AML laws and regulations at some of the largest financial institutions in the world. Working with the other federal banking regulators through the Federal Financial Institution Examination Council (FFIEC), the OCC assisted in revising the FFIEC BSA/AML Examination Manual and provided instructors for the FFIEC Advanced BSA/AML Compliance Conference.
The OCC supported U.S. efforts on Financial Action Task Force (FATF) initiatives and provided AML assistance on projects to regional supervisory bodies, U.S. interagency programs, and projects initiated by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and World Bank. In February and December, the OCC participated on interagency Financial Systems Assessment Teams (FSAT) to Algeria and Northern Iraq.
Various OCC officials participated in international conferences on combating money laundering. In February and March of 2007, OCC officials were part of a body of U.S. regulators presenting to the international audiences at the Florida International Bankers Association and the Money Laundering Alert’s International Conference on Combating Money Laundering. The OCC’s senior compliance official was a guest speaker at the Inaugural United States/Latin American Private Sector Dialogue Money Laundering and Counter Terrorist Financing held in Bogotá, Columbia. This official was also a roundtable panelist at the third United States / Middle East North Africa Private Sector Dialogue on Implementing Effective Anti-Money Laundering/Counterterrorist Financing Controls held in Dubai, United Arab Emirates.
The OCC conducted and sponsored a number of anti-money laundering initiatives for foreign banking supervisors during 2007. In May, the OCC sponsored its Anti-Money Laundering/Countering the Financing of Terrorism School in Washington, D.C. The school was designed specifically for foreign banking supervisors to increase their knowledge of money laundering and terrorist financing activities and how these acts are perpetrated. The course provided a basic overview of AML examination techniques, tools, and case studies. Twenty-nine banking supervisors from 17 countries attended. The OCC also provided AML technical assistance to banking supervisors from South Korea, Lebanon, and Russia.
During March, the OCC provided an instructor to the IMF-sponsored Anti-Money Laundering/Combating Terrorist Financing Workshop in the United Arab Emirates. The workshop was tailored for banking supervisors from the Middle East and Northern Africa to provide a basic overview of AML examination techniques, tools and case studies. Thirty-four banking supervisors from the Middle East North Africa region attended the workshop at the Arab Monetary Fund in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.
Office of Overseas Prosecutorial Development, Assistance and Training, the Asset Forfeiture and Money Laundering Section, & Counterterrorism Section (OPDAT, AFMLS, and CTS), Department of Justice
Training and Technical Assistance
The Office of Overseas Prosecutorial Development, Assistance and Training (OPDAT) section is the office within the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) that assesses, designs and implements training and technical assistance programs for our criminal justice sector counterparts overseas. OPDAT draws upon the subject matter expertise components within the Department, such as the Asset Forfeiture and Money Laundering Section (AFMLS), the Counterterrorism Section (CTS), and the United States Attorney’s Offices across the country to provide expert training and advice to enhance the capacities of our foreign partners. Much of the assistance provided by OPDAT and AFMLS is provided with funding from the Department of State.
In addition to training programs that are targeted to each country’s needs, OPDAT also provides long term, in-country assistance through Resident Legal Advisors (RLAs). RLAs are federal prosecutors who provide in-country technical assistance to improve capacity, efficiency and professionalism within foreign criminal justice systems. RLAs are posted to the U.S. Embassy in a country for a period of one or two years to work directly with counterparts in legal and law enforcement agencies, such as the ministry of justice, prosecutor’s office and the judiciary. To promote reforms within the criminal justice sector, RLAs provide assistance in legislative drafting, modernizing institutional structures, policies and practices, and training law enforcement personnel including prosecutors, judges, police and other investigative or court officials. For all of its programs, OPDAT draws upon the expertise of the Department of Justice’s Criminal Division, the National Security Division, and other DOJ components as needed. OPDAT works closely with AFMLS, the lead DOJ unit in providing countries with technical assistance in the drafting of money laundering and asset forfeiture statutes compliant with international standards.
Money Laundering/Asset Forfeiture
During 2007, DOJ/OPDAT and AFMLS continued to provide training to foreign judges, prosecutors and other law enforcement officials, and assistance in the drafting of anti-money laundering statutes compliant with international standards. The assistance furnished by OPDAT and AFMLS enhances the ability of participating countries to prevent, detect, investigate and prosecute money laundering, and to make appropriate and effective use of asset forfeiture. The content of individual technical assistance programs varies depending on the specific needs of the participants, but topics addressed in 2007 included developing money laundering legislation and conducting investigations, complying with international standards in the anti-money laundering/counterterrorist financing (AML/CTF) area: techniques and methods used for effective investigations and prosecution of money laundering, including the role of prosecutors; criminal and civil forfeiture systems; and the importance of both international and inter-agency cooperation and communication. AFMLS provides direct technical assistance in connection with legislative drafting on all matters involving money laundering, asset forfeiture and the financing of terrorism. During 2007, AFMLS provided such assistance to 11 countries and continued to participate in meetings of the Organization of American States Inter-American Drug Abuse Control Commission (OAS/CICAD) Experts Group on Money Laundering to develop and promote best practices in money laundering and asset forfeiture. AFMLS continued to participate in the Group of Eight (G-8) working groups on corruption and asset sharing and the CARIN Group on asset recovery.
AFMLS provided training to government officials concerned with money laundering issues in Algeria, Azerbaijan, China, Indonesia, Jordan, Kyrgyzstan, Lithuania, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Turkey and Turkey. Additionally, in 2007, AFMLS provided technical assistance to Algeria, Azerbaijan, the Cayman Islands, Indonesia, Jordan, Kenya, Mexico, Moldova, Pakistan, Vietnam and Yemen.
In an effort to improve international cooperation, AFMLS, in conjunction with the Swiss Federal Office of Justice and the Liechtenstein Ministry of Justice, hosted a conference in Davos, Switzerland, from April 17-20, 2007, on International Forfeiture Cooperation for prosecutors and investigators to discuss nonconviction based forfeiture. This conference brought practitioners, investigators, and international experts together to discuss experiences and provide practical tools to further global cooperation concerning nonconviction based forfeitures. Officials from Austria, Bulgaria, Denmark, Guernsey, Hong Kong, Israel, Jersey, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, the Philippines, South Africa, Switzerland, Turkey, the United Kingdom and the United States participated.
With the assistance of Department of State funding, in 2007 OPDAT provided training to government officials on money laundering and financial crime-related issues to officials from more than 23 countries, including Algeria, Antigua, Azerbaijan, Bangladesh, Bulgaria, Brunei, East Timor, Estonia, Grenada, Indonesia, Jordan, Kyrgyzstan, Latvia, Lithuania, Malaysia, Nicaragua, Pakistan, Paraguay, Philippines, Singapore, South Africa, Turkey, and the United Arab Emirates.
OPDAT conducted the second phase of a mentoring program for financial investigators, intelligence analysts, and attorneys in St. George, Antigua. The program was designed to enhance the ability of Antiguan law enforcement officials to investigate and prosecute financial crimes. During the first phase, held in October 2006, the participants developed a draft of a best-practices handbook for financial investigations and prosecutions. The second phase focused on practical exercises.
OPDAT conducted workshops for prosecutors, investigators, and police in four of the five appellate regions of Bulgaria on financial profiling and financial investigations in dismantling trafficking enterprises. These were part of a series of regional workshops encouraging law enforcement to focus on dismantling human trafficking rings by targeting money and assets.
In June, OPDAT, in conjunction with OTA, conducted two financial crimes seminars for Bulgarian prosecutors, in Veliko Tarnovo, and Plovdiv, Bulgaria. The purpose of the programs was to share experiences and lessons learned when investigating and prosecuting financial crime and money laundering cases.
OPDAT conducted a program on money laundering and organized crime in Johannesburg, South Africa, for approximately 115 participants from the South African Police Service and National Prosecuting Authority. Topics included coordination between police and prosecutors; witness protection; crime participants as witnesses; international cooperation; and a review of the South African money laundering statute in terms of subpoena authority, bank reporting requirements, and roles of estate agents and transferring attorneys.
In St. George’s, Grenada, OPDAT conducted the first phase of a program designed to enhance the ability of Grenada’s law enforcement to investigate and prosecute financial crimes. During the workshop, 25 participants, including financial investigators and prosecutors, developed a draft of a best practices handbook for financial investigations and prosecutions.
Resident Legal Advisors
The OPDAT RLA to Azerbaijan, with participation from AFMLS, organized a seminar on “Investigating and Prosecuting Money Laundering and Financial Crimes” in Baku, Azerbaijan. The program was geared toward providing technical assistance on Azerbaijan’s draft anti-money laundering/counterterrorist financing legislation.
In late November and early December, the OPDAT RLA to Bulgaria, in conjunction with the Bulgarian Association of Prosecutors, conducted three two-day regional workshops on financial crimes for Bulgarian prosecutors. Topics included the legislative framework in Bulgaria and the European Union for combating financial crimes, evidentiary standards for financial crime cases, procedure in financial crimes cases, and the enterprise theory.
Since 2001 OPDAT, CTS, and AFMLS have intensified their efforts to assist countries in developing their legal infrastructure to combat terrorism and terrorist financing. OPDAT, CTS, and AFMLS, with the assistance of other DOJ components, play a central role in providing technical assistance to foreign counterparts both to attack the financial underpinnings of terrorism and to build legal infrastructures to combat it. In this effort, OPDAT, CTS, and AFMLS work as integral parts of the U.S. Interagency Terrorist Financing Working Group (TFWG) in partnership with the Departments of State, Treasury, Homeland Security’s Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), and several other DOJ components.
TFWG, co-chaired by State INL and the Coordinator for Counterterrorism (S/CT) currently supports seven RLAs assigned overseas. The RLAs are located in Bangladesh, Indonesia, Kenya, Pakistan, Paraguay, Turkey, and the United Arab Emirates (UAE). Working in countries where governments are vulnerable to terrorist financing, RLAs focus on money laundering and financial crimes and developing counterterrorism legislation that criminalizes terrorist acts, terrorist financing, and the provision of material support or resources to terrorist organizations. The RLAs also develop technical assistance programs for prosecutors, judges and, in collaboration with DOJ’s International Criminal Investigative Training Assistance Program (ICITAP), police investigators to assist in the implementation of new money laundering and terrorist financing procedures.
In March 2005, OPDAT placed its first RLA in South Asia at Embassy Dhaka with the goal of assisting the Government of Bangladesh in strengthening its anti-money laundering/terrorist financing regime, and improving the capability of Bangladeshi law enforcement to investigate and prosecute complex financial and organized crimes. During 2007, despite an often unpredictable political climate, the RLA continued to provide assistance to Bangladeshi officials in their efforts to establish an effective anti-money laundering and terrorist financing regime.
In January 2007, the RLA conducted programs designed to support the development of procedures for Bangladesh Bank (BB) and police investigators (CID) to follow when reviewing suspicious transaction reports (STRs) for possible investigation.
At the request of the Bangladeshi government, the RLA organized two courses on Financial Investigations. Three instructors from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) Criminal Investigation Division (CID) presented two week-long courses on Financial Document Analysis to a total of 60 participants from the police, Attorney General’s Office, Central Bank’s Anti-Money Laundering Unit, the National Board of Revenue (Bangladesh IRS), and the Anti-Corruption Commission. OPDAT has provided drafting assistance to the Government of Bangladesh (GOB) on the Anti-Money Laundering Law, most recently in August 2007.
OPDAT and the U.K. Charity Commission jointly sponsored a three-day workshop entitled “Protecting Charities from Financial Abuse” in Dhaka, Bangladesh. The focus on the workshop was to ensure that nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) and charities are not abused by terrorist groups. Participants learned about technical analysis for preparing investigations, assessing threats to NGOs including why they are uniquely vulnerable to abuse due to the areas in which they work and the methods of working, ways of gathering information about NGOs, and analyzing data and suspicious transaction reports.
OPDAT provides regular assistance to the Government of Bangladesh to enable it to become the first South Asian nation admitted to the Egmont Group.
The OPDAT RLA program in Indonesia began in June 2005. In 2007, the RLA continued to engage the Attorney General’s Terrorism and Transnational Crime Task Force (SATGAS), which OPDAT helped establish as an operational unit in 2006. The task force is responsible for prosecuting significant pro-active cases involving four key areas: terrorism, money laundering, trafficking in persons and cyber crime. The SATGAS unit has nationwide jurisdiction for such prosecutions, but also works with the local offices to promote such prosecutions. Over the course of 2007, the RLA conducted a number of regional training programs for SATGAS. All the programs focused on providing substantive knowledge to local prosecutors concerning the task force’s four priorities while building relationships between the members of the task force and the prosecutors in the field. The RLA engaged the experienced members of the SATGAS as fellow presenters in the trainings. The use of experienced Indonesian SATGAS prosecutors as instructors elicited a high level of engagement on the part of the local prosecutors. Due to the size of Indonesia and SATGAS’ national mandate, regional training and outreach is a key element in USG support for SATGAS.
The RLA brought each of the members of SATGAS to the U.S. in two groups for ten-day study programs in April and November 2007. The RLA designed the program to give the SATGAS prosecutors a detailed look at how terrorism and transnational crimes are investigated and prosecuted in the U.S. The visit involved a combination of substantive presentations by DOJ experts, informal discussions with prosecutors, judges, and defense attorneys, courtroom observations, and law enforcement visits. Major themes included specialization of functions within the DOJ, police/prosecutor coordination, terrorist financing, and witness/victim security.
The OPDAT RLA program in Kenya began in 2004. In 2007, the RLA, on detail from the DOJ’s Counterterrorism section, continued to engage Government of Kenya (GOK) partners, such as the Department of Public Prosecutions (DPP), Kenya Anti-Corruption Commission (KACC), Law Society of Kenya (LSK), and others in a program that focuses on counter-terrorist financing, anti-corruption, and procedural reform. The RLA participated as one of the chief speakers in the first joint OPDAT-United Nations Office on Drug Control (UNODC) counterterrorism program in Nairobi in November 2007. The RLA made presentations on the handling of counterterrorism cases, and dealing with legal and evidentiary issues peculiar to these cases to an audience that included the Kenya National Counterterrorism Center (prosecutors, analysts, and investigators) and select members of the Anti-Terrorism police.
Despite the difficult political climate in Pakistan, OPDAT launched its RLA program at Embassy Islamabad in September 2006. The RLA, to the extent possible, has concentrated on assisting Pakistan in combating terrorist financing and money laundering, judicial reform, judicial security and intellectual property rights violations.
On August 8, 2007, Pakistan adopted a criminal money laundering law in the form of a presidential ordinance. The ordinance adopted the draft legislation that had been pending before the National Assembly since 2005, and was in response to increasing international pressure on Pakistan to pass an effective AML Bill. The RLA will continue to monitor and report on efforts to implement the legislation.
The OPDAT RLA program in Paraguay began in 2003, when OPDAT dispatched the first counterterrorism RLA to Asuncion. This position now carries regional responsibilities in the Tri-Border Area (TBA), which encompasses Paraguay, Argentina, and Brazil.
In August 2007, the RLA organized a Penal Code Retreat, during which the Senate Committee charged with amending the Penal Code worked on final revisions. Subsequently later in August, the Paraguayan Senate passed the amendments, which contain a revised money laundering statute. The statute will bring Paraguay into general compliance with international standards relevant to prosecuting money laundering cases. This statute will greatly assist Paraguay in its fight against money laundering in all types of cases including narcotics and public corruption.
Also in August, OPDAT organized a Tri-Border Terror Financing/Money Laundering conference in Asuncion, Paraguay, featuring participants from Paraguay, Argentina, and Brazil. The speakers consisted primarily of U.S. Counter Terrorism Prosecutors and representatives from law enforcement and intelligence agencies. The focus of the conference was money laundering and terrorist financing in the Tri-Border Area.
The OPDAT program in Ankara, Turkey, began in September 2006 and includes three prongs: anti-money laundering, terrorist financing and PKK issues, but the latter colors every substantive issue in which the RLA has been involved. In January 2007, the RLA hosted a legislative roundtable on methods to investigate and prosecute terrorist organizations, particularly the PKK. In this meeting, terrorism prosecutors from Turkey met with their counterparts from several European countries to discuss strategic applications of their respective laws in fighting terrorism. Significantly, the European participants described their laws and expressed their desire to work with the Turkish prosecutors to build better international cases. The two-day workshop was filled with candid discussions on expediting flows of information and the possibilities and caveats in using classified information in prosecutions and specific cases.
In September 2007, the RLA, a trial attorney on detail from AFMLS, conducted a program on anti-money laundering in Algiers, Algeria, for approximately 40 prosecutors, police and judges from the Algerian government. The seminar provided the first opportunity for Algerian and French prosecutors to discuss matters of common interest. Topics covered an overview of international anti-money-laundering standards and best practices, Algerian anti-money laundering laws, financial institutions as defendants, maximizing the financial intelligence unit, taking the profit out of crime through asset forfeiture and international sharing, and money laundering and terrorist financing case studies from the U.S., Algeria, and France. It was a successful first step and OPDAT plans to conduct a follow up workshop.
From October 31-November 1, 2007, OPDAT held an anti-money laundering course, with participation by AFMLS, for Turkish prosecutors, judges, and police in Istanbul, Turkey. The course focused on financial crimes involving banks and other financial institutions and the need to involve such institutions if a country’s anti-money laundering regime is to succeed.
OPDAT initiated the United Arab Emirates (UAE) RLA program in 2005. In 2006, OPDAT expanded the UAE RLA portfolio to include assistance to other states in the Gulf Region in combating money laundering and terrorist financing. Throughout 2007, the RLA continued to work on financial crimes, terrorist financing, and money laundering issues. The RLA traveled to Jordan, Kuwait, and Qatar to meet with the key players in the Anti-Money Laundering/Counterterrorist Financing (AML/CTF) field in the host governments. The RLA carried out AML/CTF training in Amman, Jordan, in February-March 2007, in collaboration with Treasury’s Office of Technical Assistance (OTA) and in conjunction with AFMLS. The seminar was designed to bring together key personnel from all government agencies that would participate in Jordan’s financial intelligence unit (FIU), once AML legislation was passed. The week-long course included practical exercises and familiarized analysts, investigators and prosecutors with AML/CTF strategies and best practices. The Jordanian Parliament was later reconvened for the specific purpose of considering AML legislation, which was passed and went into effect in June 2007. The RLA is currently in the process of planning an assistance program in Kuwait, set to take place in the spring of 2008.
On December 10-11, 2007, OPDAT organized a “Prosecuting Financial Crimes Seminar,” held in Dubai, UAE. The seminar is the first of its kind to be sponsored by both the UAE Institute of Training and Judicial Studies and the Dubai Institute of Advanced Legal and Judicial Studies. The seminar featured case studies designed to promote AML/CTF best practices, and included an overview of anti-money laundering enforcement initiatives to combat bulk cash smuggling.
In addition to the programs organized by the seven counterterrorism RLAs, in 2007, OPDAT conducted several bilateral and regional counterterrorism training programs. In May 2007, OPDAT organized a regional program on money laundering and terrorist financing through charities and new technology that took place in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Representatives from Bangladesh, Pakistan, Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, Philippines, Brunei, and East Timor participated in this four-day program of lectures, table top exercises, and panel discussions. The program covered the use and abuse of charities and use of new technology in financing terrorism, the investigation and prosecution of such crimes, and the seizure, freezing, forfeiture and management of assets. Representatives from the eight participating countries had opportunities to work on practical problems and share best practices. The participants from Pakistan have asked for a similar training to be conducted in Pakistan for a broader range of Pakistani participants.
On December 4-6, 2007, OPDAT and the DOJ Office of International Affairs (OIA) conducted a workshop in Manila, Philippines, on investigations and prosecutions in cases involving terrorism and terrorist financing, including the use of electronic surveillance. The need for such a program arose due to the fact that earlier in the year, the Philippines adopted the Human Security Act (HSA) of 2007 (Republic Act No. 9372). This law for the first time allows the use of electronic surveillance in court in cases involving terrorism. The workshop was geared toward policy level officials with the Philippines Department of Justice who are working on guidelines for implementation of the HSA and upper level officials from the agencies that make up the “Anti-Terrorism Council,” which is charged to implement the HSA.
During the course of 2007, OPDAT and CTS met with and provided presentations to international visitors from more than 25 countries on counterterrorism topics. The presentations covered the way the United States addresses terrorism in the post 9-11 world. Topics covered include legislation passed and pending at the time of the presentations, and issues raised in implementing new legislative tools and the changing relationship of criminal and intelligence investigations. The USA PATRIOT Act, PATRIOT Improvement and Reauthorization Act, Intelligence Reform and Terrorism Prevention Act, Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, terrorist financing and material support statutes, and the Classified Information Procedures Act are among the significant pieces of legislation addressed. Of great interest to visitors is the balancing of civil liberties and national security issues, which is also addressed. When possible, CTS and U.S. Attorney Offices have Trial Attorneys or Assistant United States Attorneys who have case or investigation experience with the visitors’ countries, participate in the programs.
During 2007, OPDAT organized a number of programs for foreign officials on organized crime, which included such topics as corruption, money laundering, implementing complex financial investigations and special investigative techniques within a task force environment, international standards, legislation, mutual legal assistance, and effective investigation techniques.
OPDAT RLAs continued to support Bosnia’s Organized Crime Anti-Human Trafficking Strike Force and the Strike Force’s working relationship with officials in Albania, Bulgaria, Kosovo, Macedonia, and Serbia and Montenegro, through mentoring and training programs on investigating and developing organized crime case strategies.
OPDAT conducted a regional program on combating transnational organized crime in Eurasia at the International Law Enforcement Academy (ILEA) in Budapest, Hungary, for prosecutors and investigators from Azerbaijan, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Moldova, Russia, and Ukraine. The program addressed the increasing capacity of criminal organizations to operate in multiple jurisdictions and across national borders, and the legal challenges this presents for law enforcement. Particular attention was given to the increasing use of “shell” corporations by organized crime groups and the need to provide law enforcement with adequate tools to track such information across borders.
OPDAT hosted a U.S. study for six Macedonian prosecutors, four Macedonian judges, and one Macedonian police officer on combating organized crime. The objectives of the study tour were for the Macedonian prosecutors to improve their skills in working with the police to develop organized crime cases, and the ability to present the cases effectively in court. The study tour provided for both the Macedonian prosecutors and judges to become more familiar with methods, techniques, and resources that can be utilized when adjudicating organized crime cases involving narcotics, money laundering, and corruption, and the connection of such cases to trafficking in persons (TIP) cases.
Then in August 2007, OPDAT conducted an anti-organized crime program for 25 judges in George, South Africa. It focused on the application of South Africa’s anti-racketeering law, which has been a key ingredient of the DOJ assistance program in South Africa for the past four years. With the use of the anti-racketeering law (similar to the U.S. Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act or “RICO” statute) on the rise among South African prosecutors, South African judges now appreciate the need to understand the nuances of this important prosecutorial tool.
From October 7-20, 2007, the OPDAT Resident Legal Advisor to Kosovo escorted five organized crime prosecutors from the Kosovo Special Prosecutors’ Office (KSPO) and three of their legal officers on a study tour of U.S. Attorneys’ Offices in Detroit and Cleveland during October 2007. The tour included discussions of border security, counterterrorism, public corruption, computer evidence, physical evidence, financial crime and human trafficking and organized crime from Eastern Europe. The members of the KPSO observed the opening statements and initial witnesses in a complex financial crime and corruption case and discussed how to incorporate questioning and evidentiary techniques under the Kosovo criminal procedures code.
During November 2007, OPDAT and the Public Affairs Office at the U.S. Embassy in Sofia, Bulgaria, conducted programs in three cities in Bulgaria—Veliko Tarnovo, Blagoevgrad, and Sofia—to raise awareness of the importance of combating organized crime. The programs were designed to build political and public will against organized crime in Bulgaria through a series of discussions with widely varying audiences, including but not limited to prosecutors and judges, on how the U.S. and Bulgaria have fought organized crime.
In 2007, OPDAT continued to provide global technical assistance for prosecutors and investigators to improve their prosecutorial and investigative abilities to combat public corruption.
In March 2007, the OPDAT RLA to Nicaragua organized a workshop for Nicaraguan law enforcement officials responsible for investigating and prosecuting corruption-related crimes. The goal of the workshop was to help the participants draft a handbook of best practices for investigating and prosecuting corruption and related crimes and thereby enhance the participants’ willingness and ability to work together on investigations and prosecutions. A select group of 22 members of Nicaragua’s law enforcement community participated in the workshop, including members of the Attorney General’s Office investigators from the Nicaraguan National Police (NNP) Financial Crimes Division, attorneys for the Superintendence of Banks, and one legislative assistant to the National Assembly working in the area of justice sector reforms.
From February 27-March 1, 2007, OPDAT organized a seminar on election fraud and related corruption in Yerevan, Armenia, for Armenian police, prosecutors, and election officials. Subsequently, on March 10-17, OPDAT conducted a U.S.-based study tour in Washington, DC, and Charleston, WV, for an Armenian delegation of six prosecutors and two Central Election Committee officials. The program focused on demonstrating the U.S. approach to preventing, detecting, investigating and prosecuting election fraud and related corruption via a series of case studies. Then, in April in Yerevan, the Armenian Prosecutor General’s office hosted a roundtable discussion of potential amendments to the CPC and electoral code, as well as a training conducted by the participants of the study tour to other police, investigators and prosecutors.
In June 2007, OPDAT, in close collaboration with AFMLS, conducted a program on anti-corruption, financial crimes, and organized crime for 25 Lithuanian prosecutors and representatives from the Ministry of Justice in Vilnius, Lithuania. This was last of three programs presented in the Baltics focusing on lessons learned and best practices when investigating and prosecuting corruption, organized crime and financial crime cases.
On May 22, 2007, the Government of Albania announced the establishment of a Joint Investigative Unit (JIU) to Fight Economic Crime and Corruption. The JIU, which was established in September 2007, brings together prosecutors, police officers, tax and customs officials to investigate and prosecute financial crime and corruption in the district of Tirana. The establishment of the JIU is due in large part to the efforts of the OPDAT RLA to Albania, who continues to provide technical assistance to the investigative unit through training, support, and mentoring. In December 2007, the RLA organized a one-day training session for JIU staff on investigation and prosecution of corruption cases. The training focused on discussion of actual case studies, shared by both U.S. and Albanian prosecutors.
OPDAT conducted an anti-corruption program for Azeri prosecutors, investigators and judges in Baku, Azerbaijan. The conference focused on Azerbaijan’s draft National Anti-Corruption Strategy and its compliance with UN and GRECO obligations. The program also had a capacity building component to enhance the attendees’ skills in detecting, investigating, prosecuting and adjudicating corruption cases.
In June 2007, OPDAT organized an Anti-Corruption Technical Workshop in Baku, Azerbaijan. This workshop brought together about 30 participants, including a dozen key members of the Anti-Corruption working group, a media representative, members of civil society and nongovernmental organizations (NGOs), U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), COE and DOJ where they engaged in a working dialogue and produced many specific recommendations for the new Anti-Corruption National Strategy.
In September, OPDAT organized another anti-corruption workshop in Baku, Azerbaijan, titled “Prosecuting Corruption Crimes: Gathering Evidence and Detecting, Freezing and Confiscating Criminal Proceeds.” The was the first in a series of workshops on prosecuting corruption crimes in Azerbaijan held at the Prosecutor General’s Training Center in Baku for an audience of investigators and prosecutors. The workshop focused on how to gather evidence of corruption crimes and how to detect, freeze and confiscate criminal proceeds.
Also in September 2007, OPDAT organized an anti-corruption training in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan. The training focused on the investigation and prosecution of anti-corruption cases, and coincided with the OPDAT RLA’s effort to assist the Kyrgyz in implementing pending changes and reforms to their criminal law system. Specifically, the Kyrgyz Parliament has enacted new laws that shift warrant power from prosecutors to judges; the Kyrgyz are also in the process of drafting a new jury trial law. The OPDAT training program provided Kyrgyz investigators, prosecutors, and judges with the knowledge, skills, and abilities to better investigate and prosecute corruption cases, while ensuring the investigation will be successful when tried before a trial by jury.
The RLA to Serbia conducted an anti-corruption program for approximately 50 Montenegrin prosecutors and investigators (police, tax and customs) in Przno, Montenegro. Because of the lack of corruption cases actually investigated or prosecuted in Montenegro, the training focused on some of the initial steps in developing corruption cases, including developing informants, developing cases through financial investigations, and conducting simple special investigative techniques (primarily recorded conversations) to obtain evidence in these cases.
Following the program in Montenegro, in December the RLA to Serbia conducted a regional conference on anti-corruption for prosecutors and investigators from western and central Serbia, in Zlatibor, Serbia. Entitled “Challenges and Successes in Combating Corruption in Serbia,” the program covered theories, best practices, and highlighted a successful prosecution of a Supreme Court Judge for bribery by the Organized Crime Prosecutor’s Office in Belgrade. The conference also served to initiate a series of regularly scheduled, one day round tables for prosecutors and police to discuss problems and solutions relating to corruption cases.
Also in December, the RLA to Georgia organized a series of practical seminars on preventing and prosecuting election fraud and misconduct in anticipation of Georgia’s January 5th Presidential election. The focus of the seminar were best practices in investigating and prosecuting a variety of election crimes, the ethical obligations of prosecutors during election time, and appropriate intake procedures for complaints regarding alleged irregularities and illegalities during the campaign.
Justice Sector Reform
In 2007, DOJ’s Justice Sector Reform Program in Colombia focused on four specific areas: (1) continued assistance in the implementation of the accusatory system, (2) assistance in specialized areas of criminal law, (3) implementation of justice and peace law, and (4) security and protection programs. In 2007, DOJ trained over 1,000 prosecutors, 13,000 police, 300 judges, and 200 forensic scientists in the accusatory system and implementation of the new Colombian Criminal Procedure Code—all of whom will be implementing the new Code in their respective judicial districts in 2008 as implementation of the new law takes effect in every region of the country. This training involved intensive, practical training in the concepts and legal underpinnings of an accusatory system and the new Code, as well as the technical skills and practical application necessary for implementation—crime scene management, forensic development and presentation of forensic evidence, witness interview, trial preparation, chain of custody and presentation of evidence at trial, trial techniques, investigation and prosecution strategy, police/prosecutor cooperation. DOJ also provided equipment to facilitate the implementation of the new Code. DOJ’s assistance in specialized areas of criminal law included training for prosecutors, investigators, and forensic scientists in money laundering, anti-kidnapping, sex crimes, anti-corruption, forensic anthropology, intellectual property, and human rights. DOJ initiated training and technical assistance as well as providing equipment, office and court facilities development, and operational funds for the Prosecutor General’s Justice and Peace Unit tasked with the investigation, interviewing and prosecution of demobilized paramilitary members under the Justice and Peace law. DOJ also provided similar assistance to the Colombian magistrates who will be involved in the court proceedings under this law. In the area of protection, DOJ continued to provide judicial protection training to Colombian protection details and began a shift in this protection training and assistance to courtroom and courthouse security. Over 200 protection personnel were trained in 2007. With the placement of a USMS official in the Embassy in Bogota, DOJ is effectively assisting the Colombian Prosecutor General’s Office develops a viable witness protection program.
OPDAT currently has seven Resident Legal Advisors (RLAs) in Iraq assisting the Iraqi justice sector in enhancing sustainable institutions built on the rule of law, with plans to expand the program in 2008. Presently, two RLAs are stationed in Baghdad, four RLAs are deployed to Provincial Reconstruction Teams (PRTs) in Iraqi provinces, (Ninewa, Salah ad Din, Kirkuk and Baghdad), and one RLA is stationed at the Law and Order Task Force (LAOTF) in the Rusafa section of Baghdad. As members of an interdisciplinary reconstruction effort, OPDAT RLAs work with local police and judges to identify and overcome obstacles to effective, fair prosecutions. The RLAs stationed in Baghdad advise the U.S. Embassy, the Iraqi Higher Juridical Council, the Central Criminal Court of Iraq, and other Baghdad-area courts on criminal justice, judicial independence, and the rule of law in coordination with the Rule of Law Coordinator’s Office in the Embassy. In the PRTs, RLAs actively pursue projects to establish lasting mechanisms for handling serious crimes, including terrorism, kidnapping, and murder. In 2007, under the leadership of OPDAT RLAs, major crimes prosecutions began in provinces outside of Baghdad for the first time since the fall of the former regime in 2003. RLAs also develop and implement training programs for Iraqi Police and investigators with input and direction from local judges. They also work with NGOs, law schools and other USG and international agencies to advance the rule of law in Iraq.
Office of Technical Assistance (OTA), Treasury Department
The Treasury Department’s Office of Technical Assistance is located within the Office of the Assistant Secretary for International Affairs. OTA has five training and technical assistance programs: tax reform, government debt issuance and management, budget policy and management, financial institution reform, and, more recently, financial enforcement related to money laundering, terrorist financing, and other financial crimes.
Fifty-six highly experienced intermittent and resident advisors comprise the Financial Enforcement Team. These advisors provide diverse expertise in the development of anti-money laundering/ccounter-terrorist financing (AML/CTF) regimes, and the investigation and prosecution of complex financial crimes. The Financial Enforcement Team is divided into three regional areas: Europe and Asia, Africa and the Middle East, and the Americas. Each region is managed by a full-time regional advisor.
OTA receives funding from USAID country missions and direct appropriations from the U.S. Congress. OTA has been designated as the recipient of Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) funding to provide assistance to a number of Threshold Countries to enhance their capacity to address corruption and related financial crimes.
Assessing Training and Technical Assistance Needs
The goal of OTA’s Financial Enforcement program is to build the capacity of host countries to prevent, detect, investigate, and prosecute complex international financial crimes by providing technical assistance in three primary areas: money laundering, terrorist financing, and other financial crimes; organized crime and corruption; and capacity building for financial law enforcement entities.
Before initiating any training or technical assistance to a host government, the OTA Enforcement team conducts a comprehensive assessment to identify needs and to formulate a responsive assistance program. These needs assessments address the legislative, regulatory, law enforcement, and judicial components of the various regimes, and include the development of technical assistance work plans to enhance a country’s efforts to fight money laundering, terrorist financing, organized crime, and corruption. In 2007, such assessments were carried out in Ecuador, Honduras, Argentina, Sao Tome and Principe, Tunisia, Kosovo, Pakistan, and Vietnam.
Anti-Money Laundering and Counter-Terrorist Financing Training
OTA specialists delivered anti-money laundering and counter-terrorist financing courses to government and private sector stakeholders in a number of countries. Course topics included money laundering and financial crimes investigations; identification and development of local and international sources of information; operations and regulation of banks and nonbank financial institutions, including record keeping; investigative techniques, including electronic surveillance and undercover operations; forensic evidence; computer assistance; interviewing; case development, planning, and organization; report writing; and, with the assistance of local legal experts, rules of evidence, search, and seizure, as well as asset seizure and forfeiture procedures.
In Africa and the Middle East, OTA delivered the Financial Investigative Techniques (FIT) course in Botswana, Ethiopia, Jordan, Lesotho, Malawi, Mauritius, Namibia, Seychelles, and South Africa. OTA collaborated with the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), Immigration and Customs Enforcement, and Customs Border Protection to deliver bulk cash smuggling training to the 14 member countries of the Eastern and Southern African Anti-Money Laundering Group (ESAAMLG) in Livingstone, Zambia and the 15 member countries of the Interagency Action Group Against Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing in West Africa (GIABA) in Dakar, Senegal. Separately, OTA funded DHS presenters in delivering bulk cash smuggling training to law enforcement and regulatory officials following the training in Livingstone.
OTA sponsored officials from several African countries to attend the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) annual anti-money laundering and counterterrorist financing training in Washington, D.C. Officials from Namibia, Ethiopia, Zambia, and Malawi were sponsored to attend this advanced training. In addition, OTA funded officials from the FIUs of Seychelles and Malawi for a study and orientation tour of the Mauritius FIU. OTA also funded the Director of the Mauritius FIU to participate in an AML workshop in Malawi, sponsored by the Bank of Malawi, and for a round table discussion with the FIU Director and staff members of the FIU.
In Asia, OTA conducted financial investigative techniques training in Sri Lanka and Vietnam. OTA also conducted several training sessions for Philippine border control agencies on bulk cash smuggling. In Central Asia, OTA provided training and mentoring assistance to law enforcement agencies and banking institutions in Kyrgyzstan and Kazakhstan.
In Europe, OTA teams delivered a variety of technical assistance products, including financial investigation training programs in Croatia, Serbia, Montenegro and Poland; anti-money laundering and antifraud training for the insurance industry in Slovenia; a “train-the-trainer” program on auditing techniques for concerned officials in Armenia; courses in criminal intelligence analysis in Bulgaria; investigative training for the financial police in Georgia; and counterfeiting and anti-money laundering/counterterrorist financing seminars for investigative agencies in Serbia and Montenegro. The seminars in Serbia and Montenegro covered bulk cash smuggling, alternative remittance systems, trade-based money laundering, corruption, using local crime to fund terrorist activities, and investigative techniques. Additionally, OTA funded a study tour for personnel from the Montenegro prosecutor’s office, police, and FIU to FinCEN and various interagency investigative task forces.
In the Americas, financial investigative techniques training was provided in the Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Peru, and Chile. In the Dominican Republic, advisors conducted an AML/CTF training seminar for the Superintendent of Banking. In El Salvador, a two-week FIT course was delivered to tax and customs investigators. In Chile, OTA and OPDAT delivered a combined FIT/Mock Trial course to prosecutors within the Attorney General’s Office, the Ministerio Publico, the Consejo de Defensa del Estado, and elements of Chile’s investigative police, and to participants from Peru and Bolivia. In Peru, OTA provided Regional FIT training for Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, Peru and Uruguay. In Montserrat, OTA assisted the Financial Services Commission with the development and delivery of an AML/CTF seminar.
Support for Financial Intelligence Units
In Afghanistan, OTA continued to assist in the development of an FIU as a semi-autonomous unit within Da Afghanistan Bank. In Sri Lanka, OTA’s resident advisor helped to stand up an operational FIU. Resident advisors in Albania, Bulgaria, Montenegro, and Serbia, and intermittent advisors in Armenia and Georgia, continued to deliver technical assistance to streamline and enhance host governments’ FIUs. In Georgia, this assistance included information technology (IT) development.
In Namibia, Ethiopia, Seychelles and Jordan, advisors were engaged with the respective Central Banks. In Malawi, OTA continued its project under the Millennium Challenge Corporation Threshold Program, following the unexpected accidental death of the resident Enforcement advisor, by assigning an FIU development expert and other advisors to continue working with the Malawi FIU that had recently been established, and to work on improving the capacity of the government to combat financial crimes.
In Paraguay, OTA Advisors made an assessment trip to determine the analytical and IT operational capacity within the FIU (SEPRELAD), as a basis for providing technical assistance in these areas.
In the Casino Gaming Group, OTA combines experts from its Tax and Financial Enforcement Teams and has been providing technical assistance to the international community in the areas of Gaming Industry Regulation since 2000. The program provides assistance in the drafting of gaming legislation, and in drafting the regulations required to implement the laws. The program also includes the provision of technical training to gaming industry regulators, including FIU personnel, to provide the capacity for auditing and inspecting casino operations and all games of chance. In addition, advanced technical workshops have been conducted in Las Vegas involving regulators from participating countries. The program has been well received by host country officials who see it as both a valuable revenue-producing project and an anticorruption measure. They also view the assistance as very beneficial in fostering the host country’s compliance efforts with the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) 40 Recommendations as they relate to casinos. In 2007, the OTA Casino Gaming Group conducted technical assistance and training, as described above, in Bulgaria, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Philippines (training sessions for the Philippine Gaming Commission), and Chile. Several South American countries participated in the training programs in Chile. Also during 2007, the Casino Gaming Group conducted an assessment of the gaming regulatory system and anti-money laundering programs for casinos in Latvia. The Group participated in a conference in Trinidad to highlight the importance of strong gaming regulatory oversight and the money laundering vulnerabilities within the casino gaming industry.
Money Services Businesses
Money services businesses (MSBs) offer several types of services, including check cashing, money transmissions, currency exchange, and more. Because of the high volume of their cash transactions, and because account relationships with related customer identification procedures are absent (resulting in an uncertain audit trail), MSBs are vulnerable to abuse for the purpose of money laundering and terrorist financing. For this reason, the FATF Recommendations call upon governments to regulate MSBs.
In April and May 2007, OTA collaborated with the Financial Action Task Force on Money Laundering in South America (GAFISUD) in the organization and presentation of two regional workshops on the oversight, regulation, and examination of MSBs. Thirty-seven regulators, analysts, and financial investigators from seven of its member countries gathered in Lima, Peru for this training. OTA advisors also participated in conferences in the Dominican Republic, and in Trinidad and Tobago, to highlight the vulnerabilities of MSBs relative to money laundering and terrorist financing, and the need for strong regulatory/supervisory regimes.
OTA continued its program to provide technical assistance relating to insurance enforcement, begun in 2006. Compromise of an insurance system weakens an economy and provides avenues for money laundering. Since inception of the program, insurance assistance has been provided in all three OTA geographic regions.
In 2007, insurance assistance was provided in a number of countries and included two long-term projects in Paraguay and Jordan. A study of the insurance system in Argentina was also completed as part of a comprehensive study of the financial services for possible OTA assistance in 2008, relating to money laundering.
The assistance in Paraguay centered on insurance company compliance with AML requirements. Information was provided for a new insurance AML compliance regulation; new inspection procedures were completed for regulators that included on-site testing; and training was provided to the inspectors. In Jordan, assistance was provided to establish an insurance anti-fraud effort, including a regulatory framework, AML compliance by the insurance industry, and an antifraud investigation unit with electronic reporting and case management systems. Training in Jordan included participation in a Middle East regional conference, workshop training for regulatory inspectors to detect insider criminal activity, and training for the newly established FIU.
Two AML conferences in Bulgaria provided insurance training for the financial services sector, with one directed toward regional regulators and the other focusing on the industries. OTA also participated in conferences held in Slovenia, with regional attendance, and in Jamaica.
Regional and Resident Advisors
OTA resident advisors continued international support in the areas of money laundering and terrorist financing. In February 2008, OTA will move its Africa and Middle East Regional Advisor, previously based in Pretoria, to Cairo, Egypt to gain a more favorable logistical position to develop and support programs in the Middle East and North Africa. In September 2007, OTA posted an advisor to the Africa Development Bank in Tunis, Tunisia, replacing the incumbent advisor, to provide assistance in the development and implementation of an anticorruption strategy for the Bank and its member countries. In September 2007, a full time resident advisor was posted in Namibia to continue efforts there to establish an FIU. OTA was selected as the MCC implementing agency for the reform of tax and customs agencies in Sao Tome and Principe, and initiated this two-year project in November 2007 with the deployment of long-term TDY advisors. OTA continued its assistance in Jordan by extending the presence of a resident advisor to work with Jordan law enforcement, regulatory, and customs authorities, and with the Central Bank of Jordan in establishing its FIU. The resident advisor in Jordan will also provide assistance to other countries in the region as needed. In Zambia, a resident advisor continued to support national efforts against financial crimes.
OTA’s regional advisor for Europe and Asia participated in observer status as part of a nascent European Commission effort to provide AML technical assistance to the northern part of Cyprus. As previously noted, the resident advisors in Albania and Bulgaria continued efforts to streamline and enhance host governments’ FIUs. OTA continued its support to the Secretariat of the Eurasian Group to Combat Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing (EAG) through its resident advisor in Moscow. Supporting national efforts against financial crimes was the focus of the resident advisors in Albania, Montenegro, Serbia, and Zambia. The OTA resident advisor in Armenia provided technical assistance on internal audit. OTA placed a new resident advisor in Kabul, Afghanistan, in February 2007, and continued to assist in the development of an operational FIU within the Da Afghanistan Bank (Central Bank). OTA was also instrumental in helping to establish a licensing regime for hawala dealers in Afghanistan. OTA’s resident advisor in Colombo, Sri Lanka has been assisting in the development of an effective anti-money laundering and counter-terrorist financing regime, to include the establishment of an FIU that meets international standards.
In Argentina, OTA’s resident advisor worked closely with the GAFISUD secretariat to coordinate AML/CTF Technical Assistance Needs Assessments for GAFISUD member countries; to support GAFISUD Working Group regional programs for the development of policies, procedures and the use of technology by FIUs; and to complete a calendar of regional training initiatives, including Financial Investigative Techniques courses, Casino and Gaming workshops, and Money Services Businesses courses. In Chile, OTA continued to provide technical assistance and training to the Superintendent of Casinos, and investigative training to police and prosecutors.
Under the auspices of the Millennium Challenge Corporation Threshold Program established for Paraguay, OTA’s resident advisor there continued to provide technical assistance to develop the internal affairs unit within the Ministry of Finance, and criminal investigation units in the Customs and Tax Administrations. OTA continued to work with counterparts in the Ministry of Finance towards the development of these units; the identification, vetting, and training of personnel; and the provision of workplaces. Each of these units has made significant progress in identifying and investigating matters under its jurisdiction.
In Central America and the Caribbean, OTA provided assistance and mentoring to the tax and customs investigation units recently established in Guatemala and Honduras, and to the tax investigation unit in El Salvador. This assistance focused on developing policy, procedures, and administrative and operational manuals; on developing capacity within each unit to conduct investigations; and on implementing case management systems. In Haiti, technical assistance was initiated to develop a financial crimes unit and train its personnel, in addition to training prosecutors and judges. In Montserrat, assistance was provided to the Financial Services Commission to develop and deliver a one-day training seminar on AML/CTF.
In Mexico, technical assistance was initiated to build AML capacity, including enhancing exchanges of information with Mexico’s Financial Intelligence Unit, and training in data analysis and forensic accounting for the Unit’s analysts.