What Peenoys are best at

In Uncategorized on 22/03/2016 at 12:05 pm

Laundering money.

NYT Dealbook reports

FOCUS FALLS ON THE PHILIPPINES AFTER BRAZEN HEISTThe search for more than $80 million of Bangladesh’s money that vanished from its account at the Federal Reserve Bank of New York has placed a spotlight on the murky banking system of the Philippines, Floyd Whaley and Neil Gough write in DealBook.

The investigation of how the money came to be transferred to the Philippines and what happened to it afterward has touched on how vulnerable the Pacific nation is to corruption and money-laundering.

The casino industry in the Philippines is exempt from many anti-money-laundering requirements. The country also has some of the world’s toughest bank secrecy laws – a legacy of the dictator Ferdinand Marcos, who hoped they would turn the Philippines into a financial hub.

“They picked us to launder this money because our system is full of loopholes,” said Sergio R. Osmeña III, a Philippine senator who leads a committee on banks and financial institutions. Lawmakers this week questioned employees of the local banks that had processed the transfers, and were frustrated that some declined to answer questions and cited their rights against self-incrimination.

The people behind the theft had tripped up while trying to request the transfer of more than $100 million that Bangladesh keeps in the New York Fed. A misspelling halted the transfer of about $20 million to Sri Lanka, but the culprits had already shifted $81 million to the Philippines. The money in the Philippines was transferred to Solaire, one of the newer casinos. Silverio Benny Tan, the corporate secretary of Bloomberry Resorts, Solaire’s parent company, said about $29 million was transferred to accounts at the casino held by a junket operator named Weikang Xu.

The casinos here in the Philippines are a black hole,” Mr. Osmeña said. “Once the money goes in there, it is gone.”


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