One of the things that career money launderers constantly look for, in the print media, is articles that detail the opening of new international airline routes. Why ? Because money laundering depends, in large part, upon the ability of its participants to funnel illicit funds over, and through international borders, both during the wash-dry-fold laundering cycle of placement-layering-integration, as well as subsequent investment of clean criminal capital.
Today's news, that the first non-stop service between Miami and the Arab countries of the Middle East, begins this afternoon, will certainly be noticed, for flights leaving the United States are rarely monitored, other than by the airlines that must insure that passenger have valid passports to travel. The ability to transport financial instruments, precious gems, or even bulk cash, directly into the financial centers of the Middle East, will eliminate the risks of changing planes in Europe.
Alternatively, legitimate financial transactions, albeit with laundered criminal profits, residing in lawyer's briefcases arriving at MIA from the Middle East, will be facilitated by the new service. Even if the arriving pasengers' bags & baggage are searched by CBP, documents are seldom examined or read, especially if they are in the possession of professionals.
While the new airline route will certainly facilitate the development of legitimate business between Florida and the Middle East, we need to be mindful of the potential financial crime consequences. Let us hope that the appropriate law enforcement agencies are reading this blog today, for I can guarantee you that their financial criminal adversaries already know about the new flights, and may have made reservations already. Has anyone looked at the passenger lists ?