Mauritania Teams Up with United Nations to fight Money Laundering

Mauritania financial authorities, bankers and businessmen seems to have joined forces in the fight against money laundering, financial crimes, tax evasion and terrorism financing.

At a meeting held lately in Nouakchott, experts from of the UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) showed mauritanian finance inspectors how to foil money-laundering operations, the various methods of money laundering and the techniques used by criminals to obscure the origins of their “dirty” money which are often anonymously deposited in ­one country and then transferred to other country for use in various activities. ­

The gathering was organised in coordination with the central bank of Mauritania, member of the MENA Financial Action Task Force on Money Laundering (FATF), an intergovernmental body set up to combat financial crimes and offenses, becoming a transnational phenomenon.

It focused on basic skills necessary to investigate money laundering, using the country’s legal framework and the tools available to gather evidence and share information.

The event helped Mauritanians better understand how money laundering works and acquire the techniques and skills to detect suspicious transactions involving dirty money. They also learned how to deter, prevent and catch money launderers red-handed.

Money lau­ndering happens in almost every country in the world and is made easier in some countries with bank secrecy laws and laxist reporting regulations.

Money launderers transfer their dirty money through several countries in order to conceal its illicit origins and make it appear legally obtained. Otherwise, they can’t use the money because it would connect them to the criminal activity, and law-enforcement officials would seize it.

To avoid scrutiny of formal channels, terrorists use informal transfer based on large network of money brokers.

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