The Laundrymen: Inside Money Laundering, the World's Third-Largest Business
Every year, in banks and financial sinks throughout the world, billions of dollars in dirty money get washed clean. Most of it comes from drugs. The people laundering the money, however, are upstanding lawyers, bankers, and accountants. Robinson proves why any war on drugs must begin with the mind-boggling profits the drug trade produces.
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I have read that book some years ago and found it very interesting because it gives more complete stories of the snippets which we had read in the papers when some of the events were discovered.
Somewhere in the book it said that the world financial system would collapse if the illegal economy was zapped completely. I wonder now in 2009, if the tighter surveillance of money flows, ever more perfected through new IT, and necessary through globalised terrorism since September 11, had shrunk the illegal economy enough to contribute to the meltdown of 2008/2009.
What was missing in the book was the illegal economy in the political class, e.g. the Kohl and CDU corruption in Germany, Mitterrand and elf Aquitaine in France. This may be difficult to research but leaving the Geneva money laundering by the German CDU party and individuals out, leaves a bad aftertaste.
Still, what's in there offers an insight, albeit incomplete, into a shadowy world. Knowing about it makes us more alert to their tricks and this is probably helpful. Had more people read this book, they might have recognised Madoff as a front, and he could have been deleted from Wall Street earlier.
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