It appears that the most popular articles in China these days are exposés of the free-spending habits of corrupt Chinese PEPs, told by their mistresses. While I am no fan of lurid journalism, there are a number of nuggets on these stories for compliance officers who wish to identify, at account opening, Chinese PEPs who are attempting to deposit criminal proceeds in their bank.
(1) Misrepresentation about their PEPs true occupation: If the new client tells you he is in the private sector, verify it through an absolutely objective source. Ignore business cards and credit cards as proof of employment.
(2) Spouse: If he tells you the beautiful young lady accompanying you is his wife, and she is substantially younger than the client, and sporting expensive clothing and accessories, watch out. There may be photos of the client, with his real wife, at social or official functions, on the Internet.
(3) Holidays: Corrupt PEPs, traveling on what they tell their wives are business trips, but in truth and in fact are holidays with the mistress du jour, are another clue that you may have a disguised PEP in front of you.
(4) Social interaction with the companion: Does the client's female company exhibit boredom, or is she overly solicitous of the client ?
(5) Joint account, yes or no: Does the client decline to have his spouse on the account, or does he see that she does not see, first-hand, the details of his financial transactions ?
Bottom line, while it is not the place of the new accounts officer, or compliance officer, to profile prospective clients just because they are traveling with a mistresses, many corrupt Chinese PEPs are know to do so on their international trips. Watch for it , as if my provide a valuable clue in identifying a PEP who says he is just an affluent businessman.