September 6 2019
Around the world, buying property is a favourite method for the corrupt to launder their ill-gotten gains.
When corrupt officials take large bribes, embezzle funds or otherwise steal money from the countries they are meant to serve, the money usually has to be cleaned before it can be enjoyed. As well as offering the trappings of luxury and symbols of status, property bought with dirty money can be sold, effectively disguising the corrupt origins of the funds. In some places in particular, it is easy to hide the real owner of a property: anonymous companies can be used to purchase property, meaning even law enforcement don’t know who owns the house next door.