CREW submitted a comment today to the U.S. Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) encouraging the agency to adopt bold anti-corruption and corporate transparency regulations to combat the flow of illicit, dirty money into the United States.
While illicit cash flows shielded by complex webs of shell companies has been a problem in the United States for decades, the last five years have thrown it into particular relief. Donald Trump’s ascent to the presidency, following closely on the heels of the Panama Papers leak in 2016, demonstrated to the world the immense dangers associated with obscuring the true sources of funds being funneled into our country. As the Trump real estate empire continued to profit throughout his presidency, Congress, law enforcement, the media, and anti-corruption groups like CREW struggled to understand exactly who was putting money into the former President’s pockets. Unfortunately, the United States’ woefully deficient corporate transparency and beneficial ownership regime was simply not up to the task of combatting the type and scale of the corruption we were witnessing.
To respond to this growing and pernicious threat, in 2020 Congress passed the Corporate Transparency Act, a piece of transformative anti-corruption legislation, to overhaul this regime and combat the influx of illicit cash into the United States. As FinCEN begins the process of designing the detailed contours of this new regulatory structure, CREW plans to encourage the agency not to water down Congress’s strong anti-corruption legislation.
This comment is CREW’s first step in a border project of helping policy makers revamp and enhance our corporate transparency laws to respond to the unprecedented corruption that has been on display for the past five years.