Caution ahead, trade-based money laundering a massive global problem

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August 13 2018

THE Sinaloa drug cartel was once the largest and most powerful in the world. The Mexican organised crime body at one point controlled so much of the illicit drug trade across Mexico and the United States that taking them down is a process that began in the 1980’s.

The key to their sinister “success”? Clothing and teddy bears from China. Cash made from selling drugs is used to bulk purchase cheap toys and clothing from China, and then re-sold as legitimate products in other parts of the world. The cartel’s operatives resell them at a profit, and the profits are pocketed by the cartels’ warlords.