HomeNewsBriefArgentina Removed From Money Laundering ‘Gray List’
BRIEF

Argentina Removed From Money Laundering 'Gray List'

ARGENTINA / 28 OCT 2014 BY KYRA GURNEY EN

A global financial crime watchdog has removed Argentina from a "gray list" of countries that aren't doing enough to fight money laundering, but a lack of convictions and persistent allegations that close associates of the president are involved in shady financial dealings call into question this decision.

On October 24, the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) removed Argentina from its list of countries that lack sufficient anti-money laundering legislation. The FATF first identified problems in Argentina's anti-money laundering regime in 2010.

FATF spokeswoman Alexandra Wijmenga-Daniel told InSight Crime via e-mail that the intergovernmental body confirmed Argentina was taking sufficient action in implementing anti-money laundering reforms, following a visit to the country this year. 

The FATF noted in a June report that Argentina had increased its requirements for financial record keeping and passed resolutions giving more power to its financial crime intelligence unit, among other measures, which the agency considered to be "sufficient steps" in addressing the problem.     

InSight Crime Analysis

Even though Argentina has strengthened its anti-money laundering legislation, this still hasn't resulted in the successful completion of many cases. According to the US State Department, the period January through September 2013 saw just 20 prosecutions and zero convictions for the crime.

Another issue is the ongoing investigation into close associates of President Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner, who are under scrutiny for suspicious financial transactions. According to a report from the International Assessment and Strategy Center (IASC), a judge in Argentina has tracked at least $65 million linked to the president’s financial associate Lazaro Baez through multiple accounts and front companies. The judge’s investigations revealed that the money -- which the IASC report said appeared to be part of the president’s “shadowy personal fortune” -- was flown out of the country on private planes and deposited into foreign accounts in countries known for being tax havens.

SEE ALSO: Coverage of Money Laundering

These allegations are particularly notable, given that the government has controls in place that are intended to prevent capital flight.

These same tight currency controls have helped fuel the development of a thriving black market dollar exchange, known as the “blue dollar.” According to the Council of Hemispheric Affairs (COHA), this black market for currency provides an incentive for companies to launder money since they can make a larger profit selling dollars on the black market.  

share icon icon icon

Was this content helpful?

We want to sustain Latin America’s largest organized crime database, but in order to do so, we need resources.

DONATE

What are your thoughts? Click here to send InSight Crime your comments.

We encourage readers to copy and distribute our work for non-commercial purposes, with attribution to InSight Crime in the byline and links to the original at both the top and bottom of the article. Check the Creative Commons website for more details of how to share our work, and please send us an email if you use an article.

Was this content helpful?

We want to sustain Latin America’s largest organized crime database, but in order to do so, we need resources.

DONATE

Related Content

ARGENTINA / 17 FEB 2012

A case involving a woman's search for her daughter, believed to have been kidnapped by a human trafficking ring 10…

EL CHAPO / 11 OCT 2011

Those who think that financial investigations are the key to unravelling organized crime are living in a fantasy world, where…

HUMAN RIGHTS / 11 FEB 2016

The family members of US citizens killed in Mexico from drug violence have sued HSBC for permitting cartels to launder…

About InSight Crime

THE ORGANIZATION

Combating Environmental Crime in Colombia

15 JUN 2021

InSight Crime presented findings from an investigation into the main criminal activities fueling environmental destruction in Colombia.

THE ORGANIZATION

Collaborating on Citizen Security Initiatives

8 JUN 2021

Co-director Steven Dudley worked with Chemonics, a DC-based development firm, to analyze the organization’s citizen security programs in Mexico.

THE ORGANIZATION

InSight Crime Deepens Its Connections with Universities

31 MAY 2021

A partnership with the University for Peace will complement InSight Crime’s research methodology and expertise on Costa Rica.

THE ORGANIZATION

With Support from USAID, InSight Crime Will Investigate Organized Crime in Haiti

31 MAY 2021

The project will seek to map out Haiti's principal criminal economies, profile the specific groups and actors, and detail their links to elements of the state.

THE ORGANIZATION

We Have Updated Our Website

4 FEB 2021

Welcome to our new home page. We have revamped the site to create a better display and reader experience.