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Money laundering and corruptions - Essay Example

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Money Laundering and Corruption Name Name of instructor Date Overview The mafia is thought to be the origin of the word money laundering. During the coinage of the term, gangsters in the USA were earning a lot of money from illegal sources that included gambling, prostitution, extortion, and bootleg liquor (Salinger, 2005, p…
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Money laundering and corruptions
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Money laundering and corruptions

The most common business thus was Laundromats. A famous gangster known as Al Capone was one owner of such Laundromats where he made his dirty money look legitimate. However, in 1931, he was convicted for tax evasion. Many experts have conceded that the claim of origin of the phrase money laundering is a myth. Rather, they cite that since the money was gotten from illegal sources, it was considered “dirty”. In a bid to “cleaning it up” so that it looked legitimate, the phrase laundering of money was coined for this literal meaning. The process of money laundering is mainly meant to obscure the source of money by the use of a number of transfers and transactions. Meyer Lansky who was referred to as the Mob’s Accountant was very troubled that the monies gotten from the illegal activities could get people in jail for tax evasion. As such, he set about looking for the best way to launder money without consequences. It was when he discovered the value of Swiss banks. Here, he used the loan back concept where money would be “loaned” to people by the compliant foreign banks and then declared to the revenue with the bank even taking a tax deduction. Money laundering is a crime. However, since its conception, the term was first publicly used in the 80s where drug trafficking was the context in which it was mostly applied. The trigger for action against drug trafficking was the realization by the government that huge profits were being made at the expense of the society. The US government anticipated that such money would eventually corrupt and contaminate its structures. Money laundering is now regarded as a global phenomenon affecting all nations. The complications of dealing with this organizational and transactional crime are many since it is very adaptable and flexible assisted by the latest technology and the contracting of professionals. The global nature of the operations is also a challenge for the authorities to deal with. The presence of a large pool of resources, the ingenuity of its operators and the quest for profits are the major threats of money laundering as it expands and moves into new frontiers every day. Corruption is treated as an incurable disease because it affects every core of the social and moral fiber. There are many evils that are associated with corruption. Indeed, in most cases, it starts small and then grows into a cancer to all sectors of society, government and the economy. There is however no clear-cut correlation between the effects of corruption and the economy. The most visible consequences of corruption are the inequalities in the society with some earning more than others and an erosion of individual morals and the degradation of the moral fiber of the society in general. These are however not parameters that can be considered as being able to determine the economic consequences of corruption on the national scale. There are nations that do have a very high corruption index but yet are economically sound. There are also those that exhibit low levels of corruption but are poor performers in the economy. This is not an indictment to corruption but it is meant to show that corruption is so disguised in the society that it may affect or it may not affect the general economy (Mauro, 1995). Effects of money laundering and corruption The role that financial institutions play in the process of money laundering is the major contributor to the problems associated with the ... Read More
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