Press

Legislation Proposes Strengthening Foreign Bribery Safeguard

Foreign Business Bribery Prohibition Act” Would Empower Private Sector to Assist in Combating Corruption

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Rep. Ed Perlmutter (D-CO) introduced legislation Thursday to strengthen safeguards against foreign bribery in a move welcomed by anti-corruption advocates.

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Legalized Cheating

By Gary Kalman

Massive corporations are cheating us out of trillions of dollars that our infrastructure desperately needs. And none of it is illegal.

Crumbling bridges, abandoned schools, stalled plans for green energy—name a problem with American infrastructure, and someone will tell you the issue is a simple lack of funds.

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Just the FACTs: March 10, 2017

Anonymous companies have opened the U.S. real estate market to the corrupt and criminal.  Towers of Secrecy, a series in the New York Times, started highlighting the abuse of these companies through opaque real estate deals back in 2015.  What they found was shocking: a Malaysian kleptocrat allegedly using US real estate to launder over $1 billion in stolen funds, a developer shielded from accountability while ignoring zoning laws, and people being defrauded from their homes with no hope for recourse.

Partially inspired by the series, last January, the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN), a branch of the U.S. Treasury Department, announced Geographic Targeting Orders (GTOs) aimed at uncovering these secret deals. The GTOs required U.S. title insurance companies to identify the natural persons, or beneficial owners, behind shell companies used to pay “all cash” for luxury real estate in the Miami and New York metropolitan areas for a six-month period. The GTOs were extended and expanded to the Los Angeles, San Antonio, San Diego, and San Francisco areas in July.

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New Bill Takes Aim at Offshore Tax Avoidance

FACT Coalition Statement on  Corporate Tax Dodging Prevention Act

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Legislation introduced by Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT), Sen. Brian Schatz (D-HI), and Rep. Jan Schakowsky (D-IL) Thursday takes aim at offshore tax avoidance by closing a number of loopholes in the tax code.

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Report Shows House Tax Plan Fails to Curb Tax Avoidance

Statement by the FACT Coalition on ITEP Study

WASHINGTON, D.C. – A new report published Wednesday by the Institute on Taxation and Economic Policy (ITEP) explains—among other things—how the House tax plan fails to curtail tax avoidance, contrary to the conventional wisdom in Washington.

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Just the FACTs: February 22, 2017

Somewhere on a long list of plagues caused by corruption is terrorism.  Yet, congress and the president just used a controversial resolution to void an important bi-partisan anti-corruption safeguard, known as Cardin-Lugar. The provision—sponsored by former Sen. Richard Lugar (R-IN) and Sen. Ben Cardin (D-MD)—protects U.S. national security and combats corruption in developing countries (particularly those plagued by extremist violence and conflict) by requiring oil, gas, and mining companies which report to the Securities and Exchange Commission to publicly report all payments made to host-governments.  Nullifying the safeguard has been met with bipartisan opposition from anti-corruption experts.

FACT, issued a statements and blog posts defending the landmark anti-corruption measure, which included a letter sent to members of Congress. The letter targeted one of the major arguments for repeal—the suggestions that it disadvantages U.S. companies—by explaining that 30 other countries—including Norway, Canada, and all 28 members of the European Union—have instituted the same disclosure requirements on extractive companies.  This means that over 90 percent of internationally operating companies in the extractives sector are covered by these transparency measures.

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Trump Voids Anti-Corruption Safeguard

President’s Action Likely to Raise Costs on American Businesses, Undermine National Security

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Clark Gascoigne, the deputy director of the FACT Coalition, issued the following statement in response to President Donald Trump’s signing of a Congressional Review Act resolution of disapproval (H.J.Res.41).

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Video: Financial Services Markup of Oversight Plan

Representative Carolyn Maloney (D-NY) introduces an amendment to add the issue of anonymous companies to the docket of the Terrorism and Illicit Finance Subcommittee of the Financial Services Committee.  Representative Jeb Hensarling (R-TX), Chair of the House Financial Services Committee, and Representative Stevan Pearce (R-NM), Chair of the Terrorism and Illicit Finance Subcommittee, endorse the amendment and call for action on anonymous companies.  The committee approves the amendment.

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