Incorporation Transparency

Congress must step up sanctions law to stop American adversaries

Though it may seem fanciful, there is a powerful tool that is tailor made for simultaneously combating North Korean nukes, Russian aggression, Chinese influence, and Iranian maleficence. This tool is beneficial ownership. In practice, existing beneficial ownership rules in the United States require compliance departments to collect, verify, and store data on clients, all at a cost to the consumer.

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New Treasury Sanctions Are Unenforceable

WASHINGTON, D.C. — As the U.S. Treasury Department unveiled sanctions against five Iranian individuals Tuesday for providing “ballistic missile-related technical expertise to Yemen’s Huthis,” the Financial Accountability and Corporate Transparency (FACT) Coalition warned that the United States has failed to equip itself with the tools to enforce those sanctions.

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Op-ed: Follow the money of opioid trafficking

The president will now declare what many of us experience first hand: The opioid epidemic is a national emergency.

Frankly, with as many as 59,000 deaths in 2016, there doesn’t seem to be any other possible description.

So many dedicated people in cities and towns, faith communities and schools, families and hospitals are fighting to save lives and help people escape addiction.

But there are also a lot of people working to keep illegal opioids on the streets.

With 2.6 million opioid addicts in the United States, the scale of drug-running operations is immense, as are the profits. It’s not a mystery why the cartels build these operations; they do it for the money, and there is a lot of money to be had.

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Strip the World’s Worst Actors of a Key Financial Tool

Anonymous shell companies are the vehicle of choice for a wide variety of bad actors. Drug cartels and human trafficking operations have long understood the benefits of corporate secrecy to launder money. Terror groups have learned these lessons, and today illicit financing and evading sanctions are as much a part of their strategy as any bombing or attack. Corrupt leaders in nations around the world steal public funds to prop up their regimes, undermine democratic institutions and ideals, and create internal and regional instability.

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New UK Law May Shut Down the Biggest Tax Havens — Aside from the U.S.

By Steve Wamhoff

The United Kingdom’s parliament has enacted a new law requiring its overseas territories — which include notorious tax havens like Bermuda, the Cayman Islands, and the British Virgin Islands — to start disclosing by 2020 the owners of corporations they register.

This could shut down a huge amount of offshore tax evasion and other financial crimes because individuals from anywhere in the world, including the United States. have long been able to set up secret corporations in these tax havens to stash their money.

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Op-ed: How an obscure business law facilitates human trafficking in massage parlors

Someone looking to comparison shop for commercial sex at one of Utah’s 50 or so illicit massage parlors can visit an online review board and get graphic descriptions of experiences with individual women in these locations.

Meanwhile, the privacy of the people who actually own the businesses where these acts take place is scrupulously protected nationwide by U.S. law. There is a very real and tragic cost to this irony. Research shows the majority of these women are likely victims of human trafficking. Corporate secrecy makes prosecuting the traffickers and helping the women find freedom extremely difficult.

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Crack Down on U.K.’s Offshore Territories Increases Pressure on U.S. to End Anonymous Companies

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Lawmakers in the United Kingdom voted Tuesday to require their offshore territories to establish systems by 2020 mandating companies to disclose their true owners at the time of formation.  The new rules, which will bring transparency to companies formed in notorious secrecy jurisdictions such as the Cayman Islands, Bermuda, and the British Virgin Islands, were welcomed by the Financial Accountability and Corporate Transparency (FACT) Coalition.

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