Featured Art

Art Has a Money Laundering Problem. NFTs Could Make It Worse

Non-fungible tokens (NFTs), blockchain-based title deeds tied to digital or physical items, have exploded into the art world like an upstart rebel fresh out of art school, tearing up conventions and leaving the establishment bewildered. In recent months, multi-million dollar sales of NFTs at venerable auction houses Christie’s… Read More

Malta: Cash payments of €10,000 for gold, cars, boats and property no longer possible

Laundering dirty money through luxury purchases made in cash has become a tad harder since cash transactions of €10,000 and higher were made illegal last March. The cash restriction was introduced as part of wide-ranging reforms to combat money laundering. And now the Financial Intelligence and Analysis Unit has set the… Read More

Former Ukrainian President Poroshenko Secretly Controlled Offshore Firms that Banked at Austria’s Raiffeisen

By Graham Stack, OCCRP, 3 May 2021 OCCRP — In the early 2010s, Petro Poroshenko — a billionaire who had just served a stint as Ukraine’s foreign minister, and would later be elected president — built a palatial estate for himself outside Kyiv. He just needed furnishings… Read More
27th April 2021
A feud has erupted within an aristocratic family over allegations that a senior Spanish politician failed to declare a Goya masterpiece so that its sale for millions of euros would avoid tax and official restrictions. Íñigo Ramírez de Haro, a diplomat and playwright, has lodged a corruption case against his… Read More
16th April 2021
Tax evasion using cryptocurrencies is “replicating” with nonfungible tokens and other new crypto-related products, according to IRS Commissioner Charles Rettig. In testimony before the Senate Finance Committee, Rettig said Tuesday the U.S. fails to collect as much as $1 trillion in taxes owed each year in part due to… Read More
14th April 2021
Last month much of the traditional art world had not heard of Mike Winkelmann. Then the digital artist sold a piece that only exists online for £50 million at a Christie’s auction. Beeple, as he is professionally known, is now the third most expensive living artist in terms of auction… Read More
26th March 2021
A U.S. judge rejected the Justice Department’s attempts to seize $325 million from an oil exploration joint-venture linked to the 1MDB scandal, in a setback for federal prosecutors in a multibillion dollar kleptocracy case. The U.S. ruling emerged at a London court hearing this week where Petrosaudi Oil Services… Read More
22nd March 2021
London’s galleries have been given an “amber alert” by the National Crime Agency warning they must do more to stop art work being used to launder illicit funds. The law enforcement agency fears tens and potentially hundreds of millions of pounds are being laundered through art sales… Read More
18th March 2021
Britain’s art market is creative, edgy, world-leading — and, it is feared, a magnet for money launderers. The next time connoisseurs are gripped by a record-breaking sale by a young Brit sensation or an old master, lawyers warn that they should pause to consider this startling statistic: according to the… Read More
12th March 2021
By David Klein, OCCRP, 11 March 2021 OCCRP — U.S. authorities will impose new anti-money laundering rules on the art and antiquity market which is believed to have been frequently used for concealing the origins of illegally obtained money and even for terror financing. The U.S. Read More
10th March 2021
The UK’s art market has been subject to stringent new regulations since an anti-money laundering directive came into force in January 2020. While the new requirements to conduct identity checks and other due diligence on art buyers initially came as a shock to an industry that has for centuries… Read More
28th February 2021
Pudding Daintytot is a pink cat, with hearts sprinkled over its chest, a rainbow cresting behind it, draconic horns, wings and a tail. “Born” in January 2019, Pudding is a “cryptokitty”: an example of what is known as a “non-fungible token”, the latest cryptocurrency craze –… Read More
26th February 2021
Four jurisdictions, including the Cayman Islands and Morocco, will undergo increased monitoring as they face pressure from a global watchdog to address deficiencies in their anti-money-laundering efforts. The Financial Action Task Force, a Paris-based organization that sets anti-money-laundering law standards, on Thursday added Burkina Faso, the Cayman Islands, Morocco and… Read More