FinCEN Issues Report on Money Laundering in Commercial Real Estate Industry

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Thursday, February 1, 2007
Bruce Zagaris
On December 5, 2006, the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN), U.S. Department of Treasury, issued a report entitled “Money Laundering in the Commercial Real Estate Industry,” which documents international money laundering in the real estate industry. The report, compiled by FinCEN, is based on a study of suspicious activity reports (SARs) involving suspected money laundering and related illicit financial activity in the commercial real estate sector filed with FinCEN over a 10-year period. According to FinCEN’s analysis, property management, real estate investment, realty, and real estate development companies were the most commonly reported entities associated with money laundering and related illicit activity. Professions that customarily collect fees in real estate transactions, such as appraisers, inspectors, surveyors, and attorneys, were reported as primary subjects with less frequency ... [more]