US puts Peru on money laundering black list

05 March 2017

For the first time, and only days after President Pedro Pablo Kuczynski’s visit to the White House, Peru has appeared in the State Department’s International Narcotics Control Strategy Report blacklist of 85 jurisdictions where money laundering of illicit activities takes place.

The latest report by Peru’s Unidad de Inteligencia Financiera (UIF) suggests that money laundering to the tune of $3 billion took place in Peru between 2007 and 2016. Almost half of this was related to drug trafficking and a third to illicit mining. The UIF figures appear to underestimate the size of the problem.

The US report criticises recent government measures that it considers unhelpful in improving control of money laundering activities, in particular the absorption of offices relating to such control into the justice ministry. Governmental corruption, not least in the justice ministry and the police, is seen by the United States as a major contributory factor to the expansion of money laundering. The report alleges that only 21 people in Peru have been arrested for money laundering.

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